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BMW Skips First Manufacturer Group Test

BMW is a surprise omission from the first group test for the new Formula E car on Monday…

Photo: Circuito Monteblanco

BMW is a surprise omission from the first ever group manufacturer test for the second generation of ABB FIA Formula E Championship car which began at the Monteblanco circuit on Monday morning.

The German manufacturer elected not to travel to Spain after a last-minute issue confined the team to its base in Munich.

“During our final preparations before loading the car, an unexpected malfunction occurred, so we decided to continue working on the car in Munich,” a BMW Motorsport spokesperson told e-racing365.

BMW will officially enter Formula E next season after working with the Andretti team since the end of the second season.

The German manufacturer will now target the second group test scheduled at the Calafat circuit next month.

Seven of the nine manufacturers are believed to be present at the track for two days of closed-door testing with one full day being run today and the second taking place on Wednesday.

Audi, DS Performance, Jaguar, Mahindra, Nissan, Penske and Venturi are at the Spanish circuit this week in a closely-controlled test which has been organized by the FIA and Spark Technologies.

The only manufacturer to publically acknowledge not running at the test this week is NIO.

As revealed by e-racing365 last month, the Chinese team elected it to forego the test due to its original scheduling of components for the Season Five package.

Some NIO personnel did however attend the test in a learning capacity during the first day of running.

The running today, which is not being officially timed, was split into several sessions and has been conducted in upmost secrecy with Formula E teams and suppliers having been asked to keep the details completely private.

Few details of the test are likely to emerge although e-racing365 understands that several manufacturers only completed a handful of systems checks laps on the first day of the familiarisation test.

Audi is said to have completed the most laps over the course of the day.

It is understood that some of those present spent Sunday afternoon and some of Monday completing their cars at the circuit in readiness for the running.

All cars present ran at least some laps during the day with several completing long runs and only a small amount of stoppages to retrieve cars reported.

The teams will use tomorrow for extra work to be conducted on the cars while some filming will also take place.

The on-track action is scheduled to begin again on Wednesday morning.

Monteblanco Test Runners

Audi – Lucas di Grassi
DS – Stephane Sarrazin
Jaguar – Nelson Piquet Jr.
Mahindra – Felix Rosenqvist
Nissan – Nicolas Prost (Monday) / Sebastien Buemi (Wednesday)
Penske – Jerome d’Ambrosio
Venturi – Michael Benyahia (Monday) / Tom Dillmann (Wednesday)

Sam Smith is e-racing365's Formula E Editor. A 20-year veteran in motorsports media, including press officer roles in both the FIA Sportscar Championship and at Lola Group, Smith is a well-known face in the Formula E paddock, where he served as series editor for Motorsport.com from 2014-17. Contact Sam

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