Why drivers are excited by Formula E’s Gen 3 cars

“Braking will be a lot more consistent making it easier for drivers to finish each race safely,” The new discs you are dependent on temperature and the quality of your brake set, which is not always something you can control. When we programme the brakes through the MGU, it’s a lot more precise and can also be a tool for us to drive the car better. For the engineers, it will be a big task to get this perfect and right, but also for us drivers to give the right feedback to point the team in the best direction as fast as possible.” The Porsche drivers are intrigued by how Gen 3 could – and probably should – increase the racing spectacle, which as ever remains partly dependent on the tightness of the tracks. At Monaco, Formula E already produces a lot more overtaking than processional F1. “The car is a bit more compact, but I don’t think it’s by a lot,” says Lotterer on his racing expectations. “It will sometimes make things easier, but I think it’s more about the agility of the car that will give us the opportunity to take more risk and overtake more. On the other side, the Gen 3 is back to open wheel so there will be less rubbing. The Gen 2 wheel spats have been removed, making the suspension much more vulnerable, and this should reduce the high amount of contact characterised in too many Formula E races. “If you look at the front wing, it’s sticking out quite a bit, so you will have to be careful, especially as the downforce levels are now a lot more relevant. If you lose your wing, it will be a performance penalty.” What isn’t yet clear are full details of ABB’s fast-charging capabilities. Recharge pit stops are planned to be added next year for further strategic variety, in a series that already hands drivers Attack Mode and Fan Boost power upgrades during races. So will this spell the end of energy management as a dominant factor, allowing drivers to race flat out? “The final regulations are still not 100% clear, so let’s see,” says Wehrlein. “What is clear is that we can recuperate more energy and the battery is a bit smaller so the car is a lot lighter. It’s still a question mark, including the pit stops and fast charging and what options we have there.” MOST POPULAR

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For the regulator, Formula E and its suppliers – including Spark Racing Technology on the chassis, Williams Advanced Engineering on the battery, Hankook (replacing Michelin) on the all-weather tyres, and most obviously ABB on charging – there is still a lot of detail to be ironed out. For the drivers, they have enough on their plates dealing with the current season. But their chance to sample Gen 3 for the first time will loom mid-summer and whatever each thinks about that way-out appearance, it’s the possibilities of performance and how they can use it best that will keep them hooked.

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Scott Baber
Scott Baber
Senior Managing editor

Manages incoming enquiries and advertising. Based in London and very sporty. Worked news and sports desks in local paper after graduating.

Email Scott@MarkMeets.com

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