One major turn-off for motor racing fans when it comes to FIA Formula E is that it is – currently – virtually a spec series.
For the inaugural 2014-2015 season, each team has basically been given a Spark-Renault SRT_01E and a paintbrush, resulting in the biggest difference between the cars essentially being the livery.
Fortunately, not even a year after the first official Formula E tests on Britain’s Donington Park circuit, eight manufacturers have announced plans to create their own cars for the second Formula E season, which will run from 2015-2016.
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Those manufacturers are:
– ABT Sportsline
– NEXTEV TCR
– Renault Sport
– Venturi Automobiles
– Virgin Racing Engineering
However, the FIA is still restricting the areas in which the manufacturers can develop in order to try and promote development within the electric powertrains specifically.
The FIA’s statement explained: In order to limit costs and promote investment and innovation in energy management, the manufacturers’ scope is initially limited to the powertrain – specifically the e-motor, the inverter, the gearbox and the cooling system. All other parts of the cars used will be the same, the aim of the FIA being to prevent costly aerodynamic developments in particular. The next stage of regulatory freedom will see manufacturers extend their efforts to the batteries, with the objective being the use a single car per driver during races from the fifth season of the championship onwards.
“The arrival of manufacturers for its second season is the next stage in Formula E’s development,” stated FIA President Jean Todt.
“The gradual opening up of the regulations will promote innovation, while at the same time keeping costs under control. The solutions chosen by the manufacturers will hopefully lead to rapid development of the future-focused technologies at the heart of Formula E. In terms of the manufacturers chosen, we are satisfied with the quality of the applications received and the number of manufacturers becoming involved reflects the huge interest generated by Formula E.”
Round 5 of the 2014-2015 Formula E season will be held on March 14 on the streets of Miami.