If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. It seems Mercedes-Benz has taken that logic to heart, as Daimler announced yesterday it would purchase a 45-percent stake in the successful Brawn GP Formula 1 team.
Concurrently, the German automaker also revealed it was selling its 40-percent share of McLaren, its current F1 partner. McLaren also helped Mercedes develop the SLR road car, which ended production earlier this year.
The Brawn team, born from the discarded Honda F1 organization and victorious in both 2009 driver’s and constructor’s championships, will now be known as Mercedes Grand Prix. Ross Brawn will continue to be the team’s director, but it’s unknown if Jenson Button, who helped drive the team to a victorious inaugural season, will return.
In an ironic twist, Button may actually be contemplating a switch to McLaren, as Autocar reports he’s unable to receive the $6.7 million salary he desires from Brawn.