Formula E cars started life out looking very much like modified Formula One machines, but the electric race cars have been given a new look.
When Formula E enters its fifth season, the redesigned cars will look like a sci-fi take on a Le Mans prototype car that’s been fired back in time. If these renders are anything to go by, that is.
The renders, produced by Spark Racing Technologies, show a car with a sharp and long lose that swoops back into flowing bodywork that has echoes of the Tim Burton-era Batmobile, mixed with an Arial Atom.
The front and rear wings are a lot more angular and aggressive looking than those on the first-generation Formula E cars. And a massive diffuser sits at the back of the car, showing that aerodynamics are just as important in Formula E as they are in Formula One.
The so-called halo cockpit mandated by FIA to keep Formula E and Formula One drivers safe in 2018 is neatly integrated in the design, and doesn’t look anywhere near as jarring as it does on F1 cars.
But the changes for the second-generation Formula E car will go beyond just a body redesign. A new battery made by McLaren Applied Technologies will feed the car’s electric motor with power and will double the energy capacity and range of the car.
This will remove the need for drivers to swap to a second car mid-way through the race, as the new battery’s capacity should allow the race to be competed in one electric race car. But it should also open races up for more strategic energy management.
The good news behind this redesign and battery boosting is that Formula races are often used as a testing ground for new automotive systems and tech, which eventually feeds down to road cars. So in the near future we could see electric cars that can handle long journeys with ease and deliver an electrifying surge of performance at the press of an accelerator.
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