Lewis Hamilton ends his involvement in Extreme E – The 2022 champion team will not compete in the 2024 season
Without giving a reason, Lewis Hamilton has pulled the plug on Extreme E and withdrawn his X44 team from the electric off-road championship. The racing team led by the Formula 1 legend was a guarantee for success: X44 won the title in 2022 with Christina Gutierrez and rally legend Sebastien Loeb. It is not known why the Briton has ended his involvement in the series run by Formula E founder Alejandro Agag, but other teams have also announced their withdrawal.
Chip Ganassi, Carl Cox Motorsport and Abt with Cupra have also decided to leave Extreme E. That’s four out of ten teams that were still competing in 2023. Only one new team will be involved in 2024: Timo Scheider will compete for the title as driver and team principal with Klara Andersson. This means seven teams are planned for 2024.
Interesting fact: Extreme E will hold its last season with battery-powered vehicles in 2024; from 2025, the championship is to be renamed Extreme H, as electric motors will then be powered by hydrogen. The reigning and two-time champion team Rosberg X Racing of Formula 1 world champion Nico Rosberg will attempt to defend its title in 2024. Andretti, McLaren, Jenson Button’s JBXE, Sainz XE and Veloce will also continue.
The former X44 driver has already found a new home at McLaren in Extreme E, where she will team up with Matthias Ekström, who will still be competing for Sainz XE in 2023. Fraser McConnell, who also drove for Hamilton, will switch to Sainz XE as Ekström’s successor. Rosberg is once again relying on his champion duo Johan Kristofferson and Mikaela Ahlin-Kottulinsky. Ten races at five double-header events are planned for the 2024 season.
“Even though we will not be competing ourselves in 2024, we will be cheering on the series from the sidelines and keeping an eye on the exciting developments in Extreme H,” reads the X44 press release, which does not provide any information about the background to the withdrawal. Ganassi, on the other hand, seems to want to wait and see how the hydrogen drive performs in the series before getting involved in the series again.
Hamilton’s decision was announced only shortly after his switch to Ferrari for the 2025 Formula 1 season. Whether this move had any influence on the seven-time world champion’s decision to turn his back on Extreme E is unknown and pure speculation. Hamilton himself has not yet commented on the withdrawal of his own team