REASON 1 - Close quarter combat!
The prospect of plenty of overtaking manoeuvres around unique city centre track layouts makes for a mouth-watering prospect to any motorsport fan – long in the tooth or new kids on the block! Innovations like FanBoost are likely only the beginning of engagement with the action as it happens… Iconic names to savour like Senna, Prost and Piquet - duelling for position as a new generation for the new generation. Like a Le Mans race of old drivers will jump into their cars, and then unlike anything seen in that century - launch a fresh batch of 21st Century electrons out through the motor on to the rubber and off round the track again!
REASON 2 - A consortium like no other! ...
McLaren, Williams, Spark Racing Technology, Michelin, DHL, Qualcomm, Renault, Mahindra, Andretti, Virgin, Audi Sport ABT, Amlin Aguri, China Racing, Dragon Racing, Trulli, Venturi – all part of a fully-fledged FIA official race series. Spanish businessman and former politician Alejandro Agag has assembled this ‘army of innovators’ by correctly identifying the business case for them all - coupled with a genuine passion to accelerate the adoption of low carbon vehicle technology. They all have a vested commercial interest in making electric racing a successful spectacle, and I am convinced not one of them has a greenwash paint-brush hidden behind their back. I would love to expand on what I believe to be the rationale for each of them individually – but I will perhaps save that for another time.
REASON 3 - Timing!
There is an inexorable migration underway from coal, gas, and oil to sustainable energy sources. Intermittent renewable energy has historically been inhibited by the lack of viable storage solutions, but this landscape is rapidly changing. A growing number of financial analysts are advising their clients to invest in this arena and divest from traditional utility companies. Many early adopter electric car families have solar panels on the roof – they are already living in the future! Whilst batteries are not the only storage devices they are at the top of the food chain - and their arrival in our cars couldn’t be more timely! In addition, a growing urban population will not tolerate toxic tailpipes anymore and are increasingly aware of cleaner solutions such as the stunning Tesla Model S and BMWi8 amongst many other electric cars on the market (not to mention the no less impressive electric buses, vans, and taxis here or on the way). Unlike other racing formulae that have come and gone, Formula E arrives at a time with all of the above happening…which perhaps explains why they were so keen to deliver the race series against an unbelievably short time-scale. Their time is NOW!
* Updated with fresh images since original publication on my LinkedIn page