Formula E, officially the ABB FIA Formula E Championship, is a class of auto racing that uses only electric-powered cars. The series was conceived in 2011, and the inaugural championship started in Beijing in September 2014. The series is currently in its fourth season. It is sanctioned by the FIA. Alejandro Agag is the founder and current CEO of Formula E.
The proposal for a city-based single-seater electric car motor racing championship was conceived by Jean Todt, the president of the world governing body of motorsport, the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA), and presented to politicians Alejandro Agag and Antonio Tajani at a dinner at a small Italian restaurant in the French capital of Paris on 3 March 2011. Tajani was concentrated on the electrification of the automobile industry, reducing carbon dioxide emissions and introducing hybrid and electric systems. Agag supported Todt's proposal after the latter discussed the FIA opening up a tender to organise the series. Agag told Todt that he would take on the task because of his prior experience in negotiating contracts with television stations, sponsorship and marketing.
The Formula E championship is currently contested by ten teams with two drivers each. Racing takes place on temporary city-center street circuits which are 1.9 to 3.4 km (1.2 to 2.1 mi) long.
Race day format
All events begin with two practice sessions in the morning, an opening 45-minute session followed by a further 30-minute session. Drivers each have two cars at their disposal with 200 kW (270bhp) of power available throughout.
The qualifying session takes place earlier in the day and lasts approximately one hour. The drivers are divided into four groups of five, with each group having six minutes to set their best lap. Full power of 200 kW is available throughout with drivers only able to use one car. Since the second season, the five fastest drivers then go out again, one-by-one, in the Super Pole shoot-out to determine the top five grid positions.
The race itself takes approximately 50 minutes, with drivers making one mandatory pit stop to change cars. The two pit crew help the driver to change seat belts and, for safety reasons, there is a minimum required time for pit stops which differs from track to track. Tire changes, unless caused by a puncture or damage, are not permitted during the pit stop. In race mode the maximum power is restricted to 180 kW (243bhp). Points are awarded using the standard FIA system.
For each race, fans can vote for their favourite driver via various social media channels to give them an extra power boost. Voting starts six days before the event and closes after the opening six minutes of the race. The three winning Fanboost drivers each receive an extra 100 kJ of energy to be used in a power window between 180 kW and 200 kW.
Points are awarded to the top ten drivers using the standard FIA system (25-18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1). Three points are also awarded to the driver securing the pole position, while the driver setting the fastest lap receives an additional point (two points during the first two seasons). The championship consists of both a drivers' and teams' championship. A driver's end of season total is made up a driver's best results. A team's total is made up by counting both drivers' scores throughout the season.
For the first season, all teams were supplied an electric racing car built by Spark Racing Technology, called the Spark-Renault SRT 01E. The chassis was designed by Dallara, with an electric motor developed by McLaren (the same as that used in its P1 supercar), a battery system created by Williams Advanced Engineering and a Hewland five-speed gearbox. Michelin was the official tire supplier. For the first season, 42 electric cars were ordered by the series, with four cars made available to each of the ten teams and two cars kept for testing purposes.
A typical Formula E car has a power of at least 250 horsepower (190 kW). The car is able to accelerate from 0–100 km/h (0–62 mph) in 3 seconds, with a maximum speed of 225 km/h (140 mph). The generators used to re-charge the batteries are powered by glycerine, a by-product of bio-diesel production.
Since the second season, regulations allow new powertrain manufacturers, who can build the electric motor, inverter, gearbox and cooling system; the chassis and battery stay the same. There were nine manufacturers creating powertrains for the 2016–17 season: ABT Schaeffler, Andretti Technologies, DS-Virgin, Jaguar, Mahindra, NextEV TCR, Penske, Renault, and Venturi.
The calendar consisted of 11 races held in 10 different host cities: Beijing, Putrajaya, Punta del Este, Buenos Aires, Long Beach, Miami, Monte Carlo, Berlin, Moscow and finally London, where last two rounds of the championship took place.
The first Formula E race at the Beijing Olympic Green Circuit on 13 September 2014 was won by Lucas Di Grassi, after Nick Heidfeld and Nicolas Prost crashed out on the final corner. In the course of the season, there were 7 different race winners: Sébastien Buemi (three times), Sam Bird (twice), Nelson Piquet Jr. (twice), António Félix da Costa, Nicolas Prost, Jérôme d'Ambrosio and Lucas Di Grassi. The championship was decided with the last race in London, where Nelson Piquet Jr. became the first Formula E champion, only a single point ahead of Sébastien Buemi. Piquet, Buemi and Di Grassi all had a theoretical chance at winning the title in the final round. The team championship was decided on the second to last race, with e.dams Renault (232 points) winning ahead of Dragon Racing (171 points) who surpassed ABT in the final round of the championship.
The second season of Formula E started in October 2015 and ended in early July 2016. The calendar consisted of 10 races in 9 different cities. For this season eight manufacturers were introduced, who were allowed to develop new powertrains. Sébastien Buemi won the championship with only 2 points more than Lucas di Grassi by claiming the fastest lap in the final race in London.
The 2016–17 FIA Formula E season was the third season of the FIA Formula E championship. It started in October 2016 in Hong Kong and ended in July 2017 in Montreal. Lucas di Grassi won the championship in the last race of the season, 24 points ahead of Sébastien Buemi and 54 points ahead of third-placed rookie driver Felix Rosenqvist. The Renault e.Dams team successfully defended their team championship title.
The 2017–18 FIA Formula E season is the fourth season of the FIA Formula E championship. It started in December 2017 in Hong Kong and ended in July 2018. Jean-Eric Vergne clinched the title with a race to spare in New York by finishing fifth while title rival Sam Bird failed to score enough points to keep the fight going into the final race of the season.
After enduring a difficult first half of the season, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler put together an incredible comeback in the second half of the season and stole the team's title away from Techeetah at the final race by two points.
On 11 July 2017, it was confirmed that BMW is set to join Formula E as an official manufacturer for season five (2018–19), building a powertrain to be used by the Andretti Formula E team. This news was followed on 24 July, 2017 by the announcement that Mercedes-Benz is to join the series starting from season six (2019–20) alongside Porsche, who announced their involvement in season six on 28 July 2017. On 25 October 2017, at the Tokyo Motor Show, Nissan Nismo announced that they will be joining Formula E as a manufacturer from season five. Season five (2018–19) will see the introduction of a radical new futuristic looking Gen II race car with much improved power and range, thus eliminating the need to change cars and pit stops altogether. The car was unveiled in January, 2018
FE School Series
During the first season, the FE School Series for student teams that developed their own electric car took place as support races at selected events. However, the series was not continued during the second season.
Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy
In September 2017, it was announced that Formula E and Jaguar would launch a production based support series with Jaguar's I-Pace battery electric SUV. The series will be named the I-Pace eTrophy and will begin during Formula E's fifth season in late 2018, with an expected grid size of 20 cars.
Records correct up to and including the 2018 Zürich ePrix.
|Season||Championship for Drivers||Championship for Teams|
|2014–15||Spark-Renault SRT_01E||Spark-Renault SRT_01E|
|2015–16||Spark-Renault Z.E 15||Spark-Renault Z.E 15|
|2016–17||Spark-ABT Schaeffler FE02||Spark-Renault Z.E 16|
|2017–18||Spark-Renault Z.E 17||Spark-Audi e-tron FE04|
Wins by driver
|Driver is a series Champion|
|Bold||Driver competed in the 2017–18 season|
Wins by team
|Team is a series Champion|
|Bold||Team competed in the 2017–18 season|
Formula E provides comprehensive live television coverage shown via major broadcasters around the globe (FOX Sports, Channel 5, CCTV-5, Eurosport, Viasat, Canal+ / Sport+, Energy (Spain), TV Asahi, Tring , Ziggo Sport Totaal). Production is carried out by Aurora Media Worldwide.
Four-time IndyCar champion and three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti joined the host television commentary team for the FIA Formula E Championship. Franchitti acts as co-commentator alongside lead commentator Jack Nicholls. Pitlane reporter is Nicki Shields. Allan McNish, Bob Varsha, Martin Haven, Scott Speed and David Coulthard have all previously covered for Franchitti and Nicholls
Formula E has a variety of drivers with various backgrounds. Several including Nick Heidfeld, Sebastien Buemi and Lucas di Grassi are former Formula One drivers, others have risen through the ranks from other series such as WEC or come from families with a long history of racing such as Nico Prost (son of 4 time F1 champion Alain Prost).
Formula E has 10 teams of 2 drivers each. However the teams in the series continue to change from season to season. Formula E is a racing series that continue to attract attention and this can be seen in the teams joining the series. As the series continues to mature more manufacturer teams are joining Formula E. As of Season 4 the following car manufacturers had teams:
In Season 5 (which will begin in December 2018) the Renault E.Dams team will be taken over by Nissan Motorsport and BMW will be partnering with the Andretti team. Porsche and Mercedes-Benz plan to join in Season 6.
- Telegraph Sport (13 September 2014). "Formula E opens with spectacular crash involving Nick Heidfeld and Nicolas Prost as Lucas di Grassi claims win". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "Championship Overview". fiaformula.com. Retrieved 2018-06-01.
- Carp, Sam (2 February 2018). "Electrified: Alejandro Agag on Formula E's path to the podium". SportsPro. Retrieved 9 March 2018.
- Sam, Mallinson (13 April 2017). "From Dream to Reality: Formula E was born in Paris". FIA Formula E Championship. Retrieved 9 March 2018.
- Chowdhury, Saj (10 September 2014). "Formula E: Does it have a future in a world dominated by F1?". BBC Sport. Retrieved 9 March 2018.
- Kingham, Ben (13 May 2016). "On the subject of Power". Current E. pp. 40–59. Retrieved 9 March 2018.
- "Teams and Drivers". Formula E. Retrieved 9 August 2018.
- "FIA Formula E Championship circuit maps". Formula-e.org. Retrieved 9 August 2018.
- "Guide – Rules & Regulations". fiaformulae.com. Archived from the original on 7 June 2015. Retrieved 12 December 2015.
- Rdmack2 (18 June 2015), Comparing Pitstops Across Motorsports, retrieved 10 June 2017
- "Michelin confirmed as official tyre supplier for FIA Formula E Championship". Formula E Operations. FIA Formula E Championship. 28 March 2013. Archived from the original on 5 April 2013.
- "Renault signs with Spark Racing Technology and Formula E Holdings as Technical Partner in the FIA Formula E Championship" (PDF). Formula E Operations. FIA Formula E Championship. 15 May 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 June 2013.
- "Williams partners with Spark Racing Technology to provide battery expertise for the FIA Formula E Championship". WilliamsF1.com. Williams F1. 11 June 2013. Archived from the original on 16 October 2014.
- "Formula E buys 42 electric racers for 2014 circuit". green.Autoblog.com. 18 November 2012.
- "Guide to – Car – Specifications". Archived from the original on 30 November 2015. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
- "Formula E power generation". Archived from the original on 12 February 2015.
- "FE–Ten teams entered for the third Formula E season". 1 July 2016.
- Grzelak, Antonia (14 July 2018). "Vergne crowned champion at Audi festival in New York". www.e-racing.net. Retrieved 14 July 2018.
- Grzelak, Antonia (15 July 2018). "Audi grabs the last title as Formula E's first chapter ends". www.e-racing.net. Retrieved 15 July 2018.
- "BMW confirms Season 5 entry to Formula E – Formula E". fiaformulae.com. Retrieved 25 July 2017.
- "Mercedes-Benz to enter Formula E in Season 6 – Formula E". fiaformulae.com. Retrieved 24 July 2017.
- "Porsche set to compete in Formula E from Season 6 – Formula E". fiaformulae.com. Retrieved 28 July 2017.
- "Formula E unveils new 'Gen 2' car for Season 5". Crash. 2018-01-30. Retrieved 2018-02-06.
- "Formula E's School Series begins in Buenos Aires". fiaformulae.com. 19 December 2014.
- "Exclusive: schools series axed". current-e.com. 5 October 2015.
- "Formula E & Kinetik announce driverless support series". fiaformulae.com. 27 November 2015.
- "Formula E is planning the first racing series for driverless cars". engadget.com. 28 November 2015.
- "FFormula E and Jaguar to launch support series". fiaformulae.com. 12 September 2017.
- FIA Formula E. "Television".
- "Formula E goes free-to-air in China". Current E : Your guide to Formula E.
- FIA Formula E. "CANAL to televise Formula E live for three seasons – Official FIA Formula E Championship".
- "FIA Formula E Championship". fia.com.
- FIA Formula E. "Dario Franchitti joins Formula E TV commentary team".
- "Nicki Shields – Scientist, TV Presenter & Broadcaster".
- "2018–19 Formula E season", Wikipedia, 2018-07-20, retrieved 2018-07-20
- "Porsche and Mercedes Formula E entries given green light by FIA". Autosport. Retrieved 9 August 2018.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to FIA Formula E Championship.|
Nissan GT Academy
Pioneering and Innovation Award
McLaren Applied Technologies