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HWA Racelab Building “Platform” for Mercedes EQ

Team principal Ulrich Fritz on HWA paving the way for Mercedes joining Formula E…

Photo: HWA

HWA team principal Ulrich Fritz says his team’s goal during its first ABB FIA Formula E Championship season is to build the best technical platform possible for the Mercedes EQ entry in Season Six.

The team is running as an independent entity with a customer Venturi powertrain this season and has ensured a technical strategy is in place.

Part of this is by using staff within the HWA operation such as former Mercedes F1 engineer Tony Ross who has taken on a senior engineering role for the Formula E program.

“We have always said that HWA is preparing the entry for Mercedes and we are running as an independent team,” Fritz told e-racing365.

“We have an independent drivetrain too, but of course we want to take away as much knowledge as we can to Brixworth, Brackley and Affalterbach.

“So we are trying to achieve the best for this season but mainly get the best platform to be competitive in Season Six.”

Fritz said that the decision for Mercedes, and subsequently HWA, to race in Formula E was taken because it brings technical and marketing relevance to the brand.

“It is a completely new field of motorsport and a new way of doing things. Things have changed over the last two or three years, look at DTM and look at WEC,” he said.

“Formula E is the place to be and it is a completely different outlook in racing now.”

German Manufacturer Battle to Be “Respectful but Fierce”

Fritz expects a “respectful but fierce’ rivalry when the four German manufacturers take on each other in Formula E, beginning in the 2019-20 season.

Mercedes and Porsche will both join the all-electric championship next year, while BMW and Audi have already established presences in the series.

“It is nice to meet the old enemies here in the Formula E paddock, we like going racing with these guys,” said Fritz.

“We have been racing against the ABT guys for almost twenty years and now we have a new fight with new cars which is good. The rivalry is respectful but obviously fierce too.

“This is a global championship though and there are manufacturers and teams from China, India, UK, Japan and all over.

“But of course a good new German fight is also nice and usually they are quite spicy.”

Sam Smith is e-racing365's Formula E Editor. A 20-year veteran in motorsports media, including press officer roles in both the FIA Sportscar Championship and at Lola Group, Smith is a well-known face in the Formula E paddock, where he served as series editor for Motorsport.com from 2014-17. Contact Sam

1 Comment

1 Comment

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    Kris G.

    December 30, 2018 at 10:18 am

    The reason the Germans are flocking to FE is because their loosing market share for a certain EV startup in their biggest market, China and US. Tesla is already selling more Model 3 in the US than Audi A4s, BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C-Classes. Their are in FE to speed-up their R&D teams.

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