Miguel Molina will graduate from Formula Renault 3.5 to the DTM this season in a works Audi. The 21-year-old Spaniard will race a 2008-spec car for leading squad Abt Sportsline, which has carried Timo Scheider to the past two DTM drivers' titles.
Molina replaces former Champ Car racer Katherine Legge in Abt's lineup. She will switch to Team Rosberg to partner Markus Winkelhock in a 2008-spec Audi.
Molina joins 2007 champion Mattias Ekstrom, Scheider, Oliver Jarvis and Martin Tomczyk in Abt's five-car squad. His teammates will all race the latest spec Audis.
Audi has been looking for a new driver to join its ranks since eight-time Le Mans 24 Hours winner Tom Kristensen retired from the DTM to focus on sports cars. By promoting Jarvis to a new car and moving Legge to another squad, Audi created a vacancy in its top team and has now chosen Renault World Series race winner Molina to fill the gap after a driver shootout.
"Miguel is not only a charming young man, he's very quick as well," said head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich. "Even two years ago he was very fast in tests with the A4 DTM. But, at the age of 18, we felt that a move into the DTM would have been a bit too early for him. That's why I'm delighted to see that in these tests he confirmed his performance and the good impression he left before."
Molina, who finished fourth in Formula Renault 3.5 in 2008, has described his switch from single-seaters to the DTM as "a dream coming true."
"Driving for Audi in the DTM is simply fantastic," he said. "Audi is a fascinating brand with superb cars and the DTM has proven to be one of the world's toughest racing series. I'll give everything to live up to the expectations placed on me."
With Legge switching to Team Rosberg, Audi has reunited reigning Daytona 24 Hours winner Mike Rockenfeller with his 2008 Le Mans Series champion teammate Alexandre Premat at Team Phoenix. Both will race 2008-spec cars.