The deal effectively turns Abt, already backed by Audi, into the German firm's works outside. The team will be renamed Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler for the 2017/2018 Formula E season.
“We’ve been supporting the Formula E commitment with increasing intensity in recent months – on the race days, in the development of the new powertrain and in numerous off-track activities as well,” said Peter Mertens, Audi’s technical development boss.
“That Audi will be the first German automobile manufacturer to be actively involved in the racing series starting next season is also a clear commitment of our brand to electric mobility, on the race track as of December and next year on the road as well with the new Audi E-tron.”
Like Jaguar and DS with their Formula E teams, Audi has said its racing outfit will benefit the development of its future electric road models. The brand’s first dedicated electric model, the E-tron SUV, is due to make production in 2019. Audi is also gearing up to produce an all-electric supercar.