The 2018-19 season five Formula E car is set for its first track test this October, reports motorsport.com’s Sam Smith.
The Spark-built season five-spec car will be powered by a 54kWh McLaren Applied Technologies (MAT) battery. In a move away from the mid-race car changes we have been used to seeing since Formula E’s maiden campaign in 2014, the 2018-19 cars will need to last the entire distance of a race.
While the first track test is scheduled for October, teams will have to wait for a chance to get their first runs of the new machines, with the opening collective test session expected to take place in early 2018. A chassis crash test has also been planned a month after the inaugural track run on 1 September 2017.
Spark will coordinate the October test, which is slightly behind schedule as a result of the extra time taken last summer to decide on a battery supplier. Originally the FIA wanted to ‘make available one full product package to each car manufacturer by 1st October 2017.’
Last month, the nine registered manufacturers received initial technical information from MAT, which is the project lead in ensuring all battery system requirements and integration. The car is scheduled to be homologated in August 2018. Among the changes for the 2018/19 Formula E is a peak power hike from 200kW to 250kW, with energy harvesting also rising to the same amount.
The new car is currently due to weigh 930kg, 42kg heavier than what was initially pursued. Part of the reason for this is a heavier-than-expected MAT battery, which one team’s technical director claimed “would be nearer 350-360kg [excluding safety structure] with 209 cells”.
Staff writer: Lewis Larkam