Despite earlier reports to the contrary, Mercedes-Benz has stressed that there has not been any vote on the car maker's future in Formula 1 – with a spokesman for the three-pointed star insisting that 'we continue our commitment'.
It was claimed earlier this week that the chief executive of parent company Daimler AG, Dieter Zetsche, had called a management board vote on whether or not Mercedes should prolong its highly successful 15-year partnership with McLaren, with the result having been in favour – but only just [see separate story – click here
An official spokesman, however, has now spoken out to set the record straight and re-affirm the Stuttgart manufacturer's ongoing support, international credit crunch or no. Aside from supplying engines to the Woking-based outfit, Mercedes is McLaren's largest shareholder, owning 40 per cent of the team.
“There was no voting by the Daimler board of management concerning Formula 1,” a Mercedes spokesperson told itv.com/f1
. “Apart from this it is correct that we continue our commitment.”
The German marque has been involved in F1 since 1993, when it entered as an engine-supplier to the new Sauber squad under the guise of Ilmor.
There has been repeated uncertainty over the long-term future of the top flight's manufacturer-backed teams since Honda's shock withdrawal from competition back in December – a consequence of poor on-track return for its considerable investment and falling global car sales.