5 things you didn't know about Formula E.

Modis Posted 19 June 2018

As the official Innovation Partner of ABB FIA Formula E, we know a thing or two about the electric car racing series. It’s relatively new to the scene, but it’s already making a big difference in the racing world.

The idea for Formula E was conceived in 2011.

It was over dinner in Paris that Alejandro Agag (Spanish businessman and former politician), Jean Todt (motor sport executive) and Antonio Tajani (President of the European Parliament at the time) had the vision to “create a racing series powered solely by electric cars held on the streets of the world’s leading cities.” They’ve come a long way since this conversation on March 3, 2011! The first Formula E race kicked off on September 13, 2014 in Beijing.

The cars’ max speed is 174mph.

Formula E cars received a power upgrade from 200kW to 250kW – about 335 horsepower – during the race’s fifth season in 2018, taking only 2.7 seconds to go from 0-60mph. The initial car used for Formula E races could only reach 140 mph, making these gains a big deal for the series.

The sound of the vehicles only reaches 80 decibels.

The quiet purr of the electric vehicle engines allows Formula E races to take place right in the middle of major cities instead of being banished to the outskirts. In fact, the sound has been compared to the Millennium Falcon – the ultimate compliment.

Glycerine powers the generators used to recharge the car batteries.

Aquafuel Research was charged with the task of building “a pair of mobile generators that could be packed inside a shipping container and freighted to each race.” As if that’s not impressive enough, they run on a virtually emission free fuel: glycerine. Glycerine is a virtually zero emission and 100% renewable fuel that can be produced as the byproduct of biodiesel production or saltwater alga. The environmentally friendly generators charge the cars in just an hour, helping the race to run efficiently while holding firm to its mission of sustainability.

The official DJ of Formula E is named EJ.

Music is a vital part of the Formula E experience. To bring the race to life for fans, the resident Formula E DJ tours the world with the race to play hi-octane sets and amp up the crowd. As Formula E puts it: “His vision was to bring to life the cinematic experience of watching a car race in the movies, giving the crowd and viewers a real life Fast and Furious, live!”

All of the tires used during races are recycled.

The hybrid tires designed by Michelin go through significant wear and tear during the 85-105km races. These special 18-inch treaded wheels are an integral part of the car’s speed. The drivers only get one set of wheels per car, so even the recycled tires are minimal.

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