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McLaren ready to embrace Formula E

NEWS STORY
04/09/2012

McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh has said that his company is eager to get involved in the newly announce race series for cars powered purely by electricity.

"I think there's quite a lot of interest, it's something that McLaren would be delighted to be involved with so we're obviously looking at it at the moment," he told Reuters Who knows, we might pop up in it.

"I think we're looking at all sorts of things," he added. "I think it's a good initiative and we'd be delighted in whatever form to be involved with it."

The promoter of the FIA backed series, Formula E Holdings Ltd (FEH), has as anchor investor London based entrepreneur Enrique Banuelos, while Former MEP and GP2 team owner Alejandro Agag, who, with his long experience in the motor sport business, will be the CEO of FEH as well as shareholder of the company.

Featuring specifically-designed zero-emission cars, it is intended that Formula E represents a sustainable vision for the future of the automotive industry over the coming decades.

Last month, the Mayor of Rio de Janeiro, Eduardo Paes, met with Jean Todt, Agag, Banuelos and the Governor of the State, Sergio Cabral (above), at which time the Brazilian city agreed to host a race in 2014. Meanwhile there is interest from many of the world's leading cities, all keen to host what they see ad environmentally friendly racing, with London's Mayor Boris Johnson almost certain to be a convert.

Asked whether McLaren might consider entering a team in the series, Whitmarsh said: "At some point, yes. But that's not at the moment. We are looking at the technology challenge and how we can contribute there.

"I think the sport has to evolve and change and I personally think they are good technical challenges and those are the things McLaren enjoys and flourishes at.

"What we've got to appeal to isn't old buggers like us," he continued. "We've got to be looking to the future and the sport has to be socially relevant.

"We are increasingly going to get silent cars and I think in the coming short order you will see a number of very exciting things from McLaren which are resonating with some of these challenges."

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