After three complete seasons on the V8 Supercars grid, Mercedes-Benz will not appear in Australia’s No. 1 touring car championship in 2016. The news comes via Erebus Motorsport, the only team that used modified E63 AMG sedans over the last three years. Erebus announced it has switched to Holden Commodores for the upcoming season. Stuttgart has yet to make an announcement, but given that the E63 AMG race cars were developed in collaboration with Erebus, it’s safe to assume that we won’t be seeing the tri-star badge in V8 Supercars anytime soon.

Erebus Motorsport didn’t state a specific reason for switching to Holdens, but the fact that the squad has won only two races in three years with Mercedes-AMG speaks for itself.

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

The switch is far from surprising, as Holden is Australia’s most successful manufacturer in motorsport, with a record 19 championships, 496 race wins, and 30 Bathurst 1000 triumphs.

Erebus joined the V8 Supercars series in 2013, when it purchased Stone Brothers Racing and switched from Ford to Mercedes-Benz. After a disappointing first year with many retirements and only three top 10 finishes, Erebus took its first win in 2014, ending the season in seventh in the teams’ standings. The Melbourne-based squad scored another win in 2015, but finished only 11th in the final ranking.

With Erebus’ switch to Holden, 13 of the 24 teams competing in 2016 will be racing Commodores. The rest of the field will be made of Ford Falcons, Nissan Altimas, and Volvo S60s.

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Why it matters

Given Erebus’ results since it joined V8 Supercars, Mercedes’ disappearance from the series was inevitable. Mercedes-AMG lacked the experience of long-time competitors Holden and Ford and this became rather obvious after more than two years of development. Although it’s always sad to see a manufacturer kill a racing program, it shouldn’t affect the Germans too much, as Mercedes-AMG is doing quite well in the more important Formula One and DTM championships. As for Erebus Motorsport, the switch to Holden Commodores should bring better result and, why not, a better shot at the championship.

Press Release

Erebus Motorsport has chosen to race Holden VF Commodores in the 2016 V8 Supercars Championship.

Mercedes No Longer Racing In Australia's V8 Supercars
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Given Holden’s successful racing heritage and its on-going commitment to Supercars, Erebus has decided to form a new relationship with the iconic Australian marque to spearhead its 2016 campaign.

Holden is Australian motorsport’s most successful manufacturer with a record 30 Bathurst 1000 triumphs, 496 championship race wins and 19 Australian Touring Car/V8 Supercars Championships.

Commodore is the most winning nameplate with 446 championship race victories while VF Commodore, introduced in 2013, has recorded 74 wins and already sits second on V8 Supercars’ all-time most winning models list.

Erebus Motorsport owner, Betty Klimenko is confident the change will enable the team to challenge for wins and podiums on a more regular basis.

“Holden has proved its competitiveness in the sport again and again,” 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.”

Driving the #9 Penrite Racing Erebus Motorsport VF Commodore, Reynolds is looking forward to getting back into a Holden.

“I made my V8 Supercars debut in a Commodore, but since I last raced a Holden the series moved into the Car Of The Future era,” Reynolds said.

“Since then, the VF Commodore has proven to be the car of choice and I see the change to Holden as a positive for Erebus Motorsport.

“I’m looking forward to getting back behind the wheel of a Commodore and together with Erebus growing a strong relationship with Holden.”

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