Erebus drops Mercedes and switches to Holdens in V8 Supercars

Mercedes will not appear on the V8 Supercars grid this year, with the Erebus team announcing a switch to Walkinshaw Racing-built Holden Commodores

Erebus drops Mercedes and switches to Holdens in V8 Supercars

The squad purchased multiple title winner Stone Brothers Racing and switched from Ford to Mercedes in 2013, with E63 AMGs developed with input from the German manufacturer's sporting arm.

While the team won two races - one with Lee Holdsworth in 2014 and with Will Davison last year - the package could not match the Ford, Holden, Volvo and Nissan vehicles on a regular basis.

Its M159 engines, developed by AMG, proved a particularly weak link, in both performance and fuel economy.

As the final element of a major overhaul of its programme, including a move from the Gold Coast to Melbourne, Erebus has confirmed it will park its Mercedes and use Commodores built by Walkinshaw Racing.

The latter has a surplus of vehicles, as it steps back from running four cars to focus on the two Holden Racing Team entries in 2016.

"Holden has proved its competitiveness in the sport again and again," team owner Betty Klimenko said.

"Erebus has experienced success, but with the switch to Holden combined with our experienced team personnel in Barry Ryan and Campbell Little, and David Reynolds behind the wheel, we have every chance to win more often."

Reynolds joins Erebus from Prodrive Racing Australia and will be partnered by rookie Aaren Russell, who steps up from a family-run squad in the second-tier Dunlop Series.

Despite finishing third in the 2015 championship, Reynolds was squeezed out of Prodrive to accommodate its latest protege, Dunlop Series champion Cameron Waters.

Of Erebus's 2015 drivers, Will Davison announced his move to the Tekno Holden team in October and Ash Walsh looks set to spend the year on the sidelines.

With only the second seat at Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport still up for grabs, nearly one third of the line-up has changed from 2015.

2016 V8 SUPERCARS FIELD

PRODRIVE RACING AUSTRALIA - FORD
Mark Winterbottom
Chaz Mostert
Cameron Waters [TBC] (Dunlop series in 2015)
Chris Pither (Dunlop Series in 2015)

TRIPLE EIGHT - HOLDEN
Jamie Whincup
Craig Lowndes
Shane van Gisbergen (Tekno in 2015)

HOLDEN RACING TEAM - HOLDEN
James Courtney
Garth Tander

BRAD JONES RACING - HOLDEN
Jason Bright
Tim Slade (Walkinshaw Racing in 2015)
Tim Blanchard (Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport in 2015)

NISSAN MOTORSPORT - NISSAN
Rick Kelly
Todd Kelly
Michael Caruso
Dale Wood (Brad Jones Racing in 2015)

VOLVO GRM - VOLVO
Scott McLaughlin
James Moffat (Nissan Motorsport in 2015)

DJR TEAM PENSKE - FORD
Fabian Coulthard (Brad Jones Racing in 2015)
Scott Pye

EREBUS MOTORSPORT - HOLDEN
David Reynolds (Prodrive in 2015)
Aaren Russell (Dunlop Series in 2015)

LUCAS DUMBRELL MOTORSPORT - HOLDEN
Nick Percat
TBA

TEKNO AUTOSPORT - HOLDEN
Will Davison (Erebus Motorsport in 2015)

CHARLIE SCHWERKOLT RACING - HOLDEN
Lee Holdsworth (Walkinshaw Racing in 2015)

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