Red Bull Pulls Out Of DTM For The First Time Since 2001

Red Bull has emerged in the modern era as a major sponsor of motor racing. It runs two teams in Formula One and sponsors more cars, teams and drivers than we’d care to count in a wide array of motorsport disciplines. But it won’t sponsor a single car this year in DTM.

The Austrian energy drink company has backed drivers in Germany’s popular touring-car series since 2001. Former champion Mattias Ekström has arguably been chief among them, running with Red Bull sponsorship since 2002. But with the Swedish driver leaving the series, Autosport reports that Red Bull is departing, too.

That means that BMW driver Marco Wittmann will compete without the beverage purveyor’s now-iconic livery, his M4 DTM bearing the Bavarian automaker’s equally recognizable colors instead.

It’s a “time-out but not a complete withdrawal,” a Red Bull spokesman told Autosport. “At the end of the year, when the future of DTM is clear, we will re-evaluate the situation.”

The future of the series was put into doubt when Mercedes announced its withdrawal, leaving only two manufacturers – BMW and Audi – on the grid for the first time since BMW returned in 2012.

Another Austrian drink brand, BWT (Best Water Technology) has also pulled out of the series. It sponsored Mercedes drivers Lucas Auer and Edoardo Mortara last season, but won’t return this year. It will, however, continue to sponsor the Force India team in F1, Arden in F2 and Lechner in the Porsche Supercup.

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  • With two major sponsorship gone, and that Merc has step down. You had to wonder how DTM will fared in future.

  • DMax

    There was talk a few years back about merging DTM with Japanese GT500 and getting American manufacturers on board for a worldwide series. I think that fell through, but man what a racing series that would’ve been.

    • It’s still ongoing, in fact starting from this year, DTM will run Super GT cars as part of exhibition in each races and vice versa with Super GT running DTM.

  • LWOAP

    So is it safe to say DTM is done?

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