by Sportswriter Martina Fuchs
MONTE CARLO, April 28 (Xinhua) -- Formula E and the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) launched a new third-generation race car in Monaco on Thursday which executives hope will represent a leap forward for motorsport and electric mobility.
Formula E and the governing body of motorsport, FIA, shared a first look at the Gen3 all-electric car that will race in Season 9 of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship at the Yacht Club de Monaco with the public.
It aims to be a machine created at the intersection of high performance, innovation and sustainability, motorsport leaders said.
"When we set out to design the Gen3 we really wanted to break ground in terms of super high performance, 100 kilowatts more power than the last one, and efficiency," Jamie Reigle, Formula E's CEO, told Xinhua during the unveil ceremony ahead of this weekend's Monaco E-Prix.
"40 percent of the energy consumed by the car is produced by the car, and it's the first net-zero carbon racing car. All of the design, all of the elements are recycled, and everything is adhering to net-zero principles. That's really what Formula E is all about. It's a race car and we're talking about climate change, and we bring those two together."
It comes as the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship makes its fifth visit to the street circuit in Monaco this Saturday for Round 6 of Season 8 on the glamourous Riviera with a total of 11 teams and 22 drivers.
Formula E said the design was inspired by the aerodynamic form of a fighter jet and that it was the fastest, lightest, most powerful and most efficient electric race car ever built with a top speed of over 322 kph / 200 mph.
It also said that seven of the world's leading automotive manufacturers registered with the FIA to race the new Gen3 in Season 9 of the ABB FIA World Championship with pre-season testing this winter.
They include DS Automobiles from France, Jaguar from the UK, Mahindra Racing from India, Maserati from Italy, NIO 333 from the UK and China, Nissan from Japan and Porsche from Germany.
Motorsport has been criticized as a gas-guzzling and cash-burning fossil fuel playground but now aims to be net zero-carbon by 2030 and has promised that all Grand Prix events will be sustainable by 2025.
Formula E's Sustainability Director Julia Palle meanwhile stressed that motorsport and sustainability can go hand in hand.
"This car really represents the fact that sustainability is not something that is doom and gloom, there is hope for the future. And this car really embodies the excitement of the racing and the reason element with no compromising between the sports and the sustainability elements."
Batteries in the Gen3 consist of sustainably-sourced minerals while linen and recycled carbon fiber are used in bodywork construction. Natural rubber and recycled fibers will make up 26 percent of new Gen3 tires, the company said.
In the meantime, Reigle stressed that Formula E has been net zero carbon since its inception in 2014.
"Because we were founded with purpose, we were measuring all of our output. We were reducing our existing emissions and then we're offsetting the balance so we were the first sport to establish ourselves as net zero carbon from inception."
The CEO also said he was hoping to return to circuits in China and expand the business there in the near term.
"China is already the leader in electric mobility in terms of adoption, and leadership position, in terms of the number of people driving electric vehicles. It's a huge market," he emphasized. "From a sporting perspective, I think there's an appreciation for motorsport."
"We really view ourselves as a progressive sport of the future, and China has set many social trends, cultural trends, and we really need to be in a major Chinese city. Of course, at the moment this is challenging but that's a temporary challenge. For us, as we look forward, Chinese cities are very much on the agenda we just have to figure out the right timing."
The 2021-2022 FIA Formula E season is the eighth season of the FIA Formula E Championship and the final season of the "Gen2" car era. The season started in January in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia. ■