Electric race cars that reach speeds of up to 200mph and generate up to 40% of their race energy from braking alone, are preparing to deliver an exciting finale to the 2023 Formula E season in London this weekend.
The Gen3 race cars have thrilled audiences around the world since pre-season testing last December, providing close racing, more lead driver changes, and ten times more overtakes than other top flight forms of car motor sport.
Described as ‘power stations on wheels’, and capable of 0-60mph in 2.8 seconds, the cutting-edge race cars also influence road car design, with know-how from battery and powertrain development on the track being translated into future electric road cars.
Tommaso Volpe, Managing Director and Team Principal at Nissan Formula E Team said: “Ultimately, Formula E is there to show how exciting electric cars are, and the fine balance between speed and energy management guarantees really close racing, no margin for error and a really electrifying spectacle for fans.
“However the technology on the race cars has real-world value. Formula E was created to accelerate electric vehicle development so the technology we use on the track could be in your next car.”
This season’s Formula E race cars are all new Gen3 (3rd generation) models, featuring a host of upgrades all designed to focus on lightweight, speed and efficiency. Weight has been cut by 60kg, power has increased by 40% over the last generation version, introduced in 2018, while top speed has increased from 175mph to over 200mph.
In addition, the amount of energy recouped by the braking system – essential in keeping the car in the race – has doubled to 40%. Indeed brake energy regeneration is a critical performance factor in Formula E – the original 2014 cars had a maximum 100KW regen, while today’s Gen3 cars have 600KW.
Alongside the all-new Gen3 race cars, the Nissan Formula E Team is also new for this season, following a behind-the-scenes restructure and the arrival of two new drivers, Sacha Fenestraz and Norman Nato. The team has demonstrated improved performance, exceptional skill and raw speed to secure fastest laps and a pole position so far this year and hope to go one better than Nato’s recent best place finish (2nd), with a victory in the British capital this weekend.
Meanwhile, Fenestraz has also secured two unique speed records in 2023, including the fastest lap in Formula E’s history. The 24-year-old recorded an average speed of over 96 mph on city streets around a 1.73-mile circuit in Cape Town street back in February.
He also holds Formula E’s fastest ever lap of the world-famous Monaco race circuit – which is shared by Formula 1™ race teams – with a qualifying time of 1.28.773 seconds in May.
“The new Gen3 rules introduced this year have been very challenging to adapt to, however we’ve made strong progress as a team during the season and Sacha also broke the all-time speed record for a Formula E car, with a crazy lap on the streets of Cape Town earlier this year,” added Tommaso.
Gen 3 car stats:
- Maximum Power (kW) 350kW
- Maximum Regeneration (kW) 600kW
- Regeneration – Front and Rear
- Tyres: All-weather iON race tires, created using 26% natural rubber and recycled fibres
- Chassis Material: Carbon fibre and aluminum
- Body Material: Linen and carbon fibre
- Weight (including driver) 840kg
- Top Speed 322km/h (200mph)
- Age – 31
- Hometown – Cannes, France
- Nationality – French
- Age – 24
- Hometown – Annecy, France
- Nationality – Franco-Argentine
About Nissan in Formula E
Nissan made its all-electric racing debut in Season 5 (2018/19) of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship, becoming the first and only Japanese manufacturer to enter the series.
In Season 7 (2020/21), Nissan announced its long-term involvement in Formula E and its commitment to the Gen3 era, which will run from Season 9 (2022/23) through to the end of Season 12 (2025/26) of the all-electric racing series.
In April 2022, Nissan acquired the e.dams race team, with the Japanese automaker taking full ownership of its involvement in the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship.
In June 2022, Nissan announced it would supply its Nissan EV powertrain technology to McLaren Racing for the entirety of the Formula E Gen3 era.
For Season 9 of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship, the Nissan Formula E drivers will be Norman Nato and Sacha Fenestraz.
Nissan races in Formula E to bring the excitement and fun of zero-emission electric vehicles to a global audience. As part of its goal to achieve carbon neutrality across its operations and the life cycle of its products by 2050, Nissan intends to electrify every all-new vehicle offering by the early 2030s in key markets. The Japanese automaker aims to bring its expertise in transferring knowledge and technology between the racetrack and road for better electric vehicles for customers.
About Formula E
The ABB FIA Formula E World Championship became the first global sport to be certified with a net zero carbon footprint from inception back in 2020, having invested in certified climate-protecting projects in all race markets to offset emissions from every season of electric racing.
All cars in the championship are powered by electricity, with the series acting as a competitive platform to test and develop the latest in electric technology.
The World’s greatest manufacturers race against each other on street circuits and Formula E promotes the adoption of sustainable mobility in city centres in a bid to combat air pollution and lessen the effects of climate change.