Electric Open Wheel Racing Series to Hit the Track in 2013

Electric Open Wheel Racing Series to Hit the Track in 2013

At the recent U.N. Climate Change Conference, the announcement to launch an all-electric racing series was made. The new series will be called Formulec EF01.

This new series will be performed on tracks around the world and in terms of performance will rival the current FIA Formula-3 series, which uses 2.0-liter gas engines.

The new race car, which is developed by the French company Segula Matra Technologies, features a pair of electric motors, mated to a custom 2-speed transmission developed by Hewland.

All the racing rules and regulations have not been announced yet, for instance, how long the races will be and if teams will be allowed to change the lithium-ion battery packs during the race. The SAFT developed battery pack can currently run for about 20-25 minutes and can take up to 90 minutes to charge.

The frame and bodywork for the new race car was developed by Mercedes-Benz Petronas F1 team at their facility in Brackley, U.K.

Michelin will develop new energy saving tires for the series. The prototype was tested at the Magny-Cours and Le Mans Bugatti circuit, where it set some impressive performance numbers. 0-60 mph took just 3 seconds, and it hit a top speed of 155 mph.

The plan is for the series to run 10 races on five continents. We wish this series all the best.

  • Ryan

    while exciting, this racing series is sure to lack atleast one major component of racing…the sound of the engines. One of the top reasons that seeing a race event in person is so memorable is because of the unbelievable sounds. You’ll still have tire squeal (which, typically at the high end of racing, you don’t hear too much) but that’s about it. F1 to IndyCar to NASCAR, its an unforgettable sound to hear the engines screaming / roaring by. However, if they manage this right, they could have racing that is more exciting than traditional racing. For example, they could mandate that the cars normally operate at 75% power, but once per lap, they get a 5 second boost to 100% power. This would make for some pretty incredible passing opportunities. It could even be organized so that if the race leader’s strategy is to conserve power until someone tries to overtake them, then using the boost to stay in the lead – but instead of allowing the race leader to get 100% power, he/she only gets 90% or 95%. This kind of exciting racing could make up for the lack of sound.