The starting shot for BMW's entry into the fifth Formula E season was given in the "BMW World" in Munich with the presence of many international media representatives on September 14, 2018. It marks the start of a new era for BMW motorsport Team. Accompanied by a test car cycle with the current models of the BMW i3s and BMW i8 as well as a technology workshop, the presentation of the BMW iFE.18 was the focus of the media day. After the presentation of the key developers in the BMW Motorsport team, the dark cloth was ceremoniously removed from the new electric racing car.
Blue and White
As expected, the electric sports car is presented in the company's own play of colors in blue and white. The asymmetrical division of the colors lengthways dominates a white and a blue side. If you let your first glance glide over the filigree racing car, the racing car with the mighty wheel arches looks like a muscle-packed big cat on the go compared to the slim-looking chassis. A successful symbiosis between design and technical standards from BMW as the entry into the Formula E season.
The eye-catching paintwork is definitely unmistakable. It should enable a high recognition value in the course of the race through the alternating color accents. The dull black cockpit, which was adapted from the designs of this year's vehicles from BMW-M-Motorsport, is the haven of peace.
The new overall package “BMW i Andretti Motorsport” brings together a group of partners who have put the car on racing tires. The long-standing supplier Magna is a premium partner. According to its own admission, Magna wants to use Formula E as a filter for researching new solutions. The Swiss private bank Julius Baer sees itself as a “Founding Main Partner”. Other partners in the Formula E package are Einhell as a manufacturer of tools and gardening equipment, Harman Kardon as a supplier of premium audio solutions and Puma as the “Official Supplier.
Technical fillet pieces
BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt brings the objectives straight to the point during the presentation. The racing engineers should put all traditional ideas in the development aside. Only three basic ideas should be put in the foreground: performance, efficiency and lowest weight. Only then should the integration into the series vehicle be resolved. And so the rear axle including the suspension was designed and the drive train was integrated into the rear. According to the company's own statements, these experiences from racing should then be transferred directly from the racetrack to the production vehicles on the road.
The driver team and the team boss
The drivers will be Formula E driver Antonio Felix da Costa and Briton Alex Sims. The versatile Sims will wear starting number 27; he was able to gain experience in collaboration with Andretti and as a BMW works driver. Felix da Costa has been familiar with Formula E since the inaugural season and will do his laps with the number 28 in the coming season.
Robert Griffiths, the previous Andretti Team Principal, will lead the BMW i Andretti Motorsport team. The Andretti Autosport team has been active in all races in Formula E since 2014. For Michael Andretti, CEO of Andretti Autosport, it is obvious that they are starting with the right partners, drivers and team members to be able to compete in Formula E. to get involved at the top.
Experience Formula E live
Formula E is a racing competition for racing cars with electric drive that is held directly on street circuits around the world. Asea Brown Boveri is the main sponsor of the racing series, which is currently being held under the official name “ABB FIA Formula E Championship” and has developed dynamically since its introduction in the 2014/2015 season.
In the first season, all participating teams competed with an identical vehicle: the Spark-Renault SRT-01E. A development phase of the series follows. During this period, homologated vehicles were initially designed by various manufacturers and the regulations for the racing cars were adapted to the respective situation.
The fifth season of the Formula E racing series starts on December 15, 2018 in Diriyya and ends on July 14, 2019 in New York City. There are numerous innovations in the technical regulations and the sports regulations. The maximum permissible power in the race is 250 kW (340 hp), the average racing power is 200 kW (272 hp). 12 different teams with 2 drivers each start. Due to the larger battery capacity, the usual battery change is no longer necessary during the racing phase, which is set at 45 minutes plus 1 lap. In attack mode, the output can be increased to 225 kW (306 PS) in certain zones, while in activated "FANBOOST" during the attack phase the output can even be increased to 340 PS (250 kW).
With these diverse new regulations and the participation of new teams, it can already be foreseen that the new 5th Formula E season will cast its spell on even more spectators. It will be interesting to see whether the start of the BMW i season will be just as spectacular as the presentation in the BMW World in Munich.
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