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Mercedes adds AMG moniker to Formula 1 team name

Michael Schumacher Mercedes 2011 Brazilian Grand PrixMercedes-Benz will race as 'Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula 1 Team' during the 2012 season, the car maker announced on Monday.

AMG has been the performance brand of Mercedes-Benz for more than 40 years.

The Brackley-based team also said its new car, the F1 W03, will not make its official track debut untill the second winter test of 2012, which takes place from 21 February at Barcelona.

Team principal Ross Brawn said: "We are very proud to reveal our new team name today. It adds another strong performance element to our team's identity and, by virtue of being shared between Brackley and Brixworth, will forge even stronger links within our team.

"At the factory, we have been focused for some time on the challenge of 2012, and our very clear ambition to move forward up the grid next year. As always, the winter development and manufacturing processes are a trade-off between time for finding performance in the factory, and time for delivering that performance during pre-season testing.

"We believe that the decision to run the car at the second winter test is the optimum compromise for our design and development programme with F1 W03."

Mercedes-Benz motorsport boss Norbert Haug added: "Our new team name fuses the proud traditions of AMG and the Mercedes-Benz Silver Arrows at the pinnacle of motorsport.

"These three letters are synonymous with high technology, sporting performance and excitement and this step is a further strong sign of the strategic commitment Mercedes-Benz has made to Formula 1. Sixteen of the 24 drivers on the grid at the season's final Grand Prix in Brazil have, or have had, a connection to Mercedes-Benz.

"In addition to the role of a works team, our commitment to Formula 1 comprises the customer engine programme and supply of the official Safety and Medical Cars."

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