Motor Racing Welcomes Electric Cars

John Jellinek The Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) announced in 2012 that it was considering developing a racing series for single seat, electrically powered cars. When the idea was first introduced, environmentalists were concerned that one of the gains they had made within the automotive industry had been exploited for recreational purposes. On the other hand however, racing enthusiasts were hesitant when they hear the news, understandably skeptical about a motorsport series without any of the sounds commonly associated with motor racing. Even the CEO of Formula E Holdings, Alejandro Agag, termed the new car “the silent revolution in motor racing” when the car was introduced during the 2014 Consumer Electronics show in Las Vegas, Nevada.

However, when former Formula 1 racer Jarno Trulli was entrusted with testing the Spark-Renault SRT_01E racing car, he was impressed with the sound of the motor behind the cockpit. Although the car was not on par with the sound of a the turbo V6 engines used in traditional Formula 1 racing, it was decidedly louder than an average passenger car.

FIA, hopes that the Formula E Championship, the electronically powered racing series Formula 1 equivalent, will create the peak of electric car development and competition, incorporating 10 two-driver teams that will compete in 10 races over the fall and winter racing seasons. Races are currently planned for in Beijing, Putrajaya (Malaysia), Rio de Janeiro, Punta del Este (Uruguay), Buenos Aires, Los Angeles, Miami, Monte Carlo, Berlin and London.

Each race will have a duration of 60 minutes on various city circuits ranging from 2.5 to 3.5 kilometers in length. In order to keep the cost of cars down, builders are required to make the cars available to at least two other teams with a capped cost of 480,000 U.S. dollars. Each team must enter four cars in a race and be prepared to engage in pit stops that will require each team’s two drivers to switch from a car with a depleted energy level to a fully charged one.

For more information about the new electric car racing please visit http://digitaljournal.com/sports/the-buzz-around-new-electric-car-racing-series/article/378684.

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