Lucas di Grassi calls for "full" factory VW or Audi Formula E input

Formula E championship leader Lucas di Grassi says his Abt Audi Sport Formula E team needs factory support from the Volkswagen Group "as soon as we can"

Lucas di Grassi calls for "full" factory VW or Audi Formula E input

Abt has represented Audi in the DTM for more than a decade and brought the manufacturer into Formula E as an affiliate of its championship entry.

Audi LMP1 driver di Grassi has committed to a third season with Abt, which develops its powertrain through a technical tie-up with long-time partner Schaeffler.

The Abt cars of di Grassi and Daniel Abt run with Audi and Volkswagen logos and di Grassi has called for the VW Group to increase its involvement with the team.

"Us as Abt Formula E will need the support as quick as we can from a manufacturer," he told Autosport.

"We managed this year to fight against two or more important manufacturers putting a lot more money into the project than we are doing and beat them so far, with a very good drivetrain from Schaeffler.

"Whether it's any brand from the VW Group - we have two brands on the jacket - it's very important that as soon as we can, we need support from the factory."

While Abt is often perceived as a works team because of the Audi Sport title in its FE team name, it is one of four independents currently competing in the series.

Of the other three, Team Aguri and Andretti Autosport are understood to be working towards a manufacturer affiliation, with Dragon Racing also striving to establish a significant technical partnership for season three.

The 2016/17 campaign will bring British marque Jaguar into the fold with a Williams Advanced Engineering tie-up, joining Renault, DS, Mahindra, Venturi and NEXTEV on the list of carmakers in FE.

Di Grassi said the championship's growth would only make it more difficult for the independent teams to fight at the front.

"Being a privateer, we will not have the successes we've had this year for the years to come," he added.

"Because the championship is increasing the professionalism and complexity we will need a manufacturer, a full manufacturer, behind us soon."

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