Formula E plans inaugural season, courts big-name teams

Formula E, the electric open-wheel racing series, has announced the calendar for its inaugural season in 2014. There will be ten races on four continents, starting with Rome and followed by London, Berlin, Los Angeles, Miami, Rio de Janeiro, Beijing, Bangkok and Putrajaya, Malaysia.

This week, legendary IndyCar team Andretti Autosport joined Drayson Racing and China Racing as a Formula E competitor. “It’s an honor for Andretti Autosport to have been selected as one of the 10 founding Formula E teams for the inaugural season,” said Michael Andretti. “I look forward to further exploring the series and helping build the future of open-wheel racing across the world.”

Series organizer Alejandro Agag said, “It’s fantastic for such a highly-established outfit to show its commitment to sustainable motoring and with two US races on the inaugural calendar – Los Angeles and Miami – I’m sure American motorsport fans will have a lot to cheer come race day. As well as being the first team from the US, today’s announcement now means we have three teams from three different continents and we’re looking forward to announcing many more over the coming months.”

Earlier, Agag told Autoweek that Formula E is already in talks with McLaren, and went on to say, “I’m sure teams like Ferrari and Red Bull will be in Formula E one day.”

For the inaugural season, Andretti and other teams will use the new Spark-Renault SRT_01E car, built by the French firm Spark Racing Technology. The lithium-ion batteries will be supplied by UK-based Williams, the electric motors and transmission by McLaren, the tires by Michelin, and the chassis by the venerable Italian company Dallara.

 

Sources: FIA, Autoweek, Autoblog Green