Paddy Lowe, the current technical director at McLaren is moving to Mercedes AMG and will be replaced at his current employer by Tim Goss. Rumours are around for a while already, but after British newspaper The Guardian broke the news today, McLaren confirmed the replacement of Lowe.
A month earlier, current team principal at Mercedes, Ross Brawn, categorically denied leaving his post, but admitted that Lowe had been approached by the team in order to strengthen its already impressive technical management team. At that time, Brawn was asked as it seemed he would drop out of his position due to a conflict with Niki Lauda, a 10% shareholder at the team, but since the arrival of former Williams chairman Toto Wolff, the situation appears to have improved for Brawn.
While it was not revealed yet what role Lowe will take up at Mercedes, it certainly is strange timing for him to switch teams, given that he will now be paid by McLaren throughout 2013 before being able to join Mercedes at the end of the year. This means he will have no impact on neither team's 2014 cars while it is widely known this is going to be a considerable technical challenge, given the drastic rule changes that will include a switch to 1.6 litre turbo engines.
For McLaren on the other hand it is another blow after losing their star driver Lewis Hamilton to the same team. Tim Goss now promotes from chief designer to technical director at Woking. He will face the immediate challenge to continue the design of the 2014 challenger, teamed up with a customer Mercedes engine.
EDIT: McLaren's Sam Michael confirmed SkySportsF1 during the final winter test that Lowe is indeed moving to Mercedes AMG F1 Team.