ADVERTORIAL • April 2017
While Formula One demonstrates what cars are currently capable of with a sizeable budget and open technology, the FIA Formula E Championship – the fully-electric, single-seater race series – is ahead of the curve, leading the way in the future of sustainable racing. With the involvement of auto companies such as Avis as an official team partner of the Mahindra Racing Formula E team, the series focuses on furthering the development of everyday electric vehicles by proving the technology through competitive, inner-city street races. Here are five ways that Formula E is changing the face of motor sport for good
With all cars on the grid sporting similar performance, it’s all about each team’s skills and ability, just as any sport should be. The drivers bring with them a wealth of experience from the worlds of Formula One and endurance racing. Take Nick Heidfeld, who has competed in 185 Formula One Grand Prix races. The German driver now races for the Avis-sponsored Mahindra Racing Formula E team and earned the first podium finish for the team at the Beijing ePrix in 2015. Added to that, the narrow tracks mean overtaking is a challenge, forcing cars to battle for pole position in close wheel-to-wheel competition, with increased chances of incidents making it all the more engaging.
Bringing racing to the city streets like never before, Formula E takes place in the heart of some of the world’s best-known cities such as Paris, Hong Kong, New York and Buenos Aires. With up to 20 cars and drivers vying for the podium on tight tracks that wind their way through the city centres, Formula E is the most accessible form of motor sport, appealing particularly to those in bustling urban areas.
Short of becoming a Formula E driver yourself, the best way to enjoy these roads is in an Avis hire car. All British Airways Executive Club Members booking a car with Avis can look forward to collecting a minimum of 500 Avios, which can be used to pay towards flights and upgrades with BA. Book at ba.com/avis
It is estimated that by 2022, the adoption of electric cars will start to increase significantly to reach a predicted global sales total of 41 million units by 2040. Since Formula E’s inception in 2014, it has been the catalyst for much of the technology seen in everyday electric vehicles. Within the space of three seasons, the teams have gone from using a standardised power system to developing their own power trains this year, such as Mahindra Racing’s latest M3Electro racer.
Less than ten years ago, electric car ownership was, at best, a novelty – but to have one as a high-performance runabout was almost inconceivable. Today, the technology on show in Formula E demonstrates that electric-powered cars are very much a reality. The cars we see on the grid are powered by batteries that can deliver up to 200kW of constant power – the equivalent of 270bhp – and can accelerate from standing to 100kph in three seconds and on to a top speed of 225kph.
Alongside the easily accessible circuits, Formula E takes audience participation to the next level. FanBoost allows fans to directly influence the outcome of the race by casting a vote via social media for their favourite driver, with the three most popular choices receiving an extra brief surge of power in the race to aid overtaking. The more popular you are, the more power and pace you have at your disposal.
With the 2016/17 season already off to a flying start, Avis – British Airways Executive Club’s car rental partner and official team partner of the Mahindra Racing Formula E team – are offering two premium tickets to the forthcoming Paris ePrix on 20 May 2017. On top of seeing the race, there’s also the chance to get behind-the-scenes with Mahindra Racing and meet the team including drivers Nick Heidfeld and young gun Felix Rosenqvist.
For your chance to win tickets to the Formula E race in Paris, and for full terms and conditions, visit the Avis blog
All Images: Nat Twiss/Spacesuitmedia