‘I’m not going anywhere’ – Toto Wolff signs new Mercedes deal, ‘performance clause’ talk addressed

Jamie Woodhouse
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff in the paddock at the 2023 Belgian Grand Prix.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff in the paddock.

Mercedes team principal and F1 chief executive Toto Wolff is not going anywhere, with a multi-year contract extension confirmed.

Initially buying into the Williams team, Wolff left to join Mercedes ahead of the 2013 Formula 1 campaign, where he is now one-third owner of the team alongside Daimler and INEOS.

In addition to his shares, Wolff is also the Mercedes team boss and will continue to call the shots through the coming years, after signing fresh terms.

Toto Wolff signs new three-year Mercedes deal

The three-year contract extension was confirmed as Wolff spoke to the Telegraph, with he, INEOS boss Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Mercedes chairman Ola Källenius deciding that it was in the team’s best interests for Wolff to continue in his role as the Mercedes F1 chief.

“I think the most important thing between the three of us is that we trust each other,” Wolff explained.

“At the end of the day, as a shareholder myself, I want the best return on investment. And the best return on investment is winning.

“I’m not going to try to hang on to a position that I think somebody is going to do better than me. I make sure that I have people around who can tell me otherwise. In the end the three of us decided: ‘Let’s do it again’.”

PlanetF1.com recommends

F1 team principals: How long has each team boss been in charge?

F1 2024 calendar: Car launch dates, pre-season testing, TV schedule

The Mercedes team does find itself in a difficult spell though for the first time under Wolff’s leadership, having fallen away from the title battle over the past two campaigns, while 2023 marked their first winless season since 2011.

Red Bull has now taken over the spot once very familiar to Mercedes as F1’s dominant force, though there is zero sign of the intensity getting to Wolff, who instead is very much up for the challenge of navigating these tricky waters, hence his decision to sign a new deal.

“I’m part of this team in various functions,” Wolff continued. “I’m a co-shareholder. I’m on the board. These are things which will not change whatever executive, or non-executive, role I have.

“But I feel good. The risk for me is always more bore-out than burnout. And that’s why I embrace the challenges we have today, even though they sometimes feel very, very difficult to manage.”

As for whether there are any performance-related clauses in this new Mercedes deal, Wolff clarified: “I’ve never had a performance clause. You either trust each other or you don’t. And we are aligned as shareholders.”

Mercedes are out to return to the title scene in F1 2024 as they chase a ninth Constructors’ title, while Lewis Hamilton will hope to take a fresh shot at a record-breaking eighth World Championship.

Read next: Max Verstappen ‘dirty driver’ tag questioned in fresh Lewis Hamilton battle prediction