Antonio Felix da Costa is set to race for the Andretti Formula E team in season three of the all-electric championship.
The Portuguese driver is believed to have reached an agreement with the Andretti Formula E team for the 2016/17 season, which will begin in Hong Kong on October 9. The deal, which was agreed in recent days, reportedly includes options for multiple seasons.
Motorsport.com has learned through a source within the American team that da Costa is expected to officially sign a long-term deal shortly.
Although da Costa himself would not talk directly about his deal or mention the Andretti team when contacted by Motorsport.com, he did indicate that his immediate future in the championship was secured.
“It has been decided earlier this week but I can’t give anything away. It is a long-term thing and I am happy,” da Costa told Motorsport.com.
“What I can say for sure is that I will be in Formula E full-time next year, so I will not be missing any races. I really want to have a go [at winning] this championship.”
Da Costa's expected move from Team Aguri to Andretti could be announced before the London ePrix finale next month.
Robin Frijns is the strong favourite to continue with Andretti alongside da Costa next season.
Da Costa thanks Team Aguri
24-year-old da Costa has been one of the stars of Formula E since its inception in 2014, scoring a win at Buenos Aires in 2015 and delivering several eye-catching performances.
Team Aguri, which stuck with the original Spark-Renault chassis and powertrain combination for season two, is currently being wound down so it can be re-born as a new entity owned and run by Chinese Media Capital for season three.
Da Costa has been cleared to race one last time for Team Aguri at Battersea Park next month despite the team making several changes in the final few races, which goes against the Sporting Regulations.
“It’s been a rollercoaster and an adventure together [with Team Aguri],” da Costa told Motorsport.com.
“The team was started from nothing and the guys have been really cool to me, so I have to say thank you to them. We’ve managed to bring the fight to the big guys at Renault and Abt on some occasions, so to be in the cockpit for the last time with the Aguri name [in London] will be special.”
Da Costa joining Andretti is further indication of BMW’s plans to enter Formula E in a step-by-step process, which, it is believed, should ultimately end with a full-blown factory effort in season five of the championship in 2018/19.
BMW Director of Motorsport, Jens Marquardt has gone on record several times stating that the German giant would only be interested in Formula E when it reaches single-car races.
Motorsport.com understands that a technical partnership between BMW and Andretti has been worked on for some time and is already progressing.
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- Formula 1