Battery bid by Red Bull

Current E Formula E Buenos Aires 2016 Dan Bathie Norm Ballantyne pushes Williams battery through the pitlane

Red Bull Technology has joined the race to supply Formula E with batteries from season five, reports motorsport.com.

Red Bull has established itself as one of motorsport’s most exciting and dynamic brands in recent times, chiefly through its involvement in Formula 1 firstly as a sponsor and then with its own team since 2005. 

Now, Red Bull Technology, an off-shoot of the Red Bull Group. has put its name forward as a possible supplier for Formula E batteries from season five, when a new chassis will also be introduced. The current unit has been designed by Williams Advanced Engineering.

RBT has expressed interest in supplying teams in the series as it looks to expand its motorsport portfolio. The Milton Keynes-based company is believed to have posted a tender to design and build the new units, which are set to be increased to a useable energy of 54kWh with a maximum power of 250kW. Should RBT be successful in the tendering process, it would have to supply all of the teams from 2018 onwards.

The plan for the new battery sees it being initially crash tested next June before a test battery will become available to teams in November 2017. The car, complete with battery, must be homologated in June 2018 before testing commences. A collective test is provisionally scheduled for August 2018.

RBT is being seen as an outside choice for supplying the battery for season five, due to a potential conflict in both experience and branding as a supplier.

“Red Bull is a surprise but what it shows is that Formula E is attracting some really big names,” said a senior engineering chief. “They would do a good job I’m sure, but I think it is unlikely the teams will be completely comfortable, because it limits potential commercial deals for us in the future, especially in terms of embracing other energy drink partnership possibilities.”

motorsport.com

Luke Smith

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