Formula E race winner Felix Rosenqvist has welcomed the addition of manufacturers Mercedes and Porsche to the series, saying their joint arrival is “the last nail in the coffin” for the all-electric series’ doubters.
The reigning champions in Formula 1 and the FIA World Endurance Championship respectively, Mercedes and Porsche confirmed last week they would be joining the Formula E grid in season six, starting in the winter of 2019.
Mercedes will be shutting its DTM program in order to commit to the electric single-seater championship, while Porsche’s entry comes at the cost of its successful LMP1 team.
The news means there are 11 manufacturers signed up for Formula E in season six, with the likes of Audi, BMW, Jaguar and Renault already enjoying involvement.
Reflecting on the announcements from Mercedes and Porsche, Rosenqvist believes it will silence many who doubt Formula E has a future within motorsport or is of interest to manufacturers.
“You always hear people trash-talking Formula E, especially the older generation, that it’s not proper racing, blah blah blah. I think they sort of put the last nail in the coffin,” Rosenqvist told NBC Sports.
“It was quite nice. A lot of people got a bit silence by that. Massive for Formula E, and good for everyone involved. It just says a lot about where the championship is heading.
“I think it’s also important to not look at where the championship is now but where it will be in five years. I think that’s the main thing, and I think that’s what the manufacturers are thinking as well.
“This is just the beginning. For sure there will be bright times ahead for the series.”