“It is an honour to become part of the Scuderia Ferrari family, a team with such an exceptional history,” commented Gutierrez, who lost his Sauber seat at the end of the 2014 season. “It is for me the beginning of a new path for my future and I’m going to do my utmost to contribute to the achievement of the targets set by the Scuderia.
“I want to thank everybody for their belief in my potential; this will bring a great opportunity for me to develop further and get to the top in the near future. With all my passion and dedication, I’m now looking forward to the start of this new venture.”
A former GP3 champion, Gutierrez made his F1 debut in 2013, scoring six points in his rookie season at Sauber, with whom he went on to endure a frustrating 2014 campaign as the Swiss squad failed to trouble the top ten with their uncompetitive C33 car.
“I am pleased to welcome Esteban Gutierrez,” added Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene. “We are pleased to be able to offer this opportunity to Esteban who, although young, has plenty of experience relating to the new generation of Formula One cars. I am sure that, with his experience, he will make an important contribution to the development work of the team in the simulator.
“Welcoming Esteban also means opening the gates of Ferrari to a driver from Mexico, a country where the Scuderia still has a lot of fans, just as was the case 50 years ago in the days of the Rodriguez brothers.”
Gutierrez’s compatriot Pedro Rodriguez made eight F1 starts for Ferrari between 1964 and ’69, while younger sibling Ricardo had five outings with the Scuderia between ’61 and ’62.