Official: Formula E champion Lucas di Grassi returns to ABT & becomes team-mate of Nico Müller
Two years after Audi's exit from Formula E, Lucas di Grassi and the Team ABT are reunited. The 39-year-old is switching back to the German squad after two seasons with Venturi and Mahindra and will sit behind the wheels of the ABT Cupra bolides together with Nico Müller in the coming season. The team announced the new hire in a press release on Friday.
A few days after his surprise departure from Mahindra Racing, di Grassi has found a new, old sporting home in Formula E, signing a multi-year contract with ABT Cupra. There he will meet Nico Müller. The Swiss is entering his second season with the team and was able to finish the pre-season with three top-10 results in the last four races.
"It just feels great to be back with ABT," says Lucas di Grassi. "Not only did I win two titles with this team, but I also have endless memories with all the people who work there with so much passion. I couldn’t be more excited to return after two years and I’m really looking forward to working together. Together, we will give our all to get back, step by step, the results that the whole team deserves."
Biermaier: "The perfect man for the future"
"We know about the great challenge of battling against international competition as a small customer team," says Thomas Biermaier, Team Principal of ABT Cupra. "That's why experience, technical know-how and full passion for the joint project count all the more for us – with Lucas, we have the perfect man on board for the future."
"We are happy that we have brought Lucas back to ABT, adds Hans-Jürgen Abt, CEO of the ABT Group. "He was and is a good friend of our whole team and is one of Formula E’s greats of the past ten years."
ABT and di Grassi can look back on many joint successes in the electric series: The Brazilian not only won the very first Formula E race in Beijing in 2014, but also the drivers' title in season 3. Together with Daniel Abt, di Grassi also brought the championship title in the team standings to Germany one season later.
Hopes of greater success in the coming season are likely to be limited, however: The Kempten-based racing team uses customer powertrains from Mahindra, which were developed by ZF Friedrichshafen. The Mahindra powertrains are considered the least competitive and most inefficient on the grid. Since the homologation cycle in Formula E is two years, no major advances are possible in 2024, at least in the hardware area.