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Formula E Gets Official World Championship Status

Formula E granted full FIA World Championship status for 2020-21 season…

Photo: FIA

The ABB FIA Formula E Championship will become a fully-fledged FIA World Championship beginning in its 2020-21 season.

As first reported by e-racing365 in April, the all-electric championship will get full World Championship status after going through the precise criteria laid out by the FIA.

Formula E joins Formula 1, the FIA World Endurance Championship, the FIA World Rally Championship and the FIA World Rallycross Championship as an official ‘World Championship’ status series.

The use of World Championship status can only be granted to a series that has four ‘automobile makes’ participating on average over an entire season.

The transition also incorporates specific commercial costs to entitle the granting of the status.

The plans have existed for a long time between various stakeholders and the FIA and will be formerly ratified at the FIA World Motor Sport Council in Paris on Wednesday.

Formula E Teams and Manufacturers Association chairman James Barclay told e-racing365 earlier this year that the process was underway and that the granting of the title was likely for Season Seven.

“Longer term, there’s understanding, that we eventually need to move towards that but actually the implementation time is key so we need to plan accordingly for that and what that would mean for the championship,” explained Barclay.

Some changes from a governance point of view for the championship, relating to technical and sporting aspects with the FIA, may also be applied for the championship as an official World Championship but these are yet to be confirmed.

This may also be reflected in changes to how the rules book is agreed on and the way it is officially formed.

“The creation and development of Formula E have been a great adventure,” said FIA President Jean Todt.

“I am proud that today we confirm its FIA world championship status. Since we started this journey, Formula E has undoubtedly gone from strength to strength.

“Within a short timeframe, the series has proven itself relevant for the automotive industry with two more major car manufacturers having joined the series at the start of the current season, bringing their total number to ten.

“The commitment and professionalism of those manufacturers and their respective teams is mirrored in the quality of the driver roster which has improved with every season.

“Since its first race in Beijing in 2014 and with every E-Prix thereafter, Formula E has proven that the concept of cutting-edge electric racing works. I wholeheartedly welcome Formula E as the latest FIA World Championship.”

E-racing365 understands that initial plans were for Formula E to tie in this announcement with details and visuals on the Gen 2.5 Formula E car which will be unveiled shortly.

A first glimpse of the new-look car, which will debut as a refresh for the 2020-21 season, is expected in the coming weeks.

“It was always our ambition to one day become a FIA World Championship,” added Formula E Chairman Alejandro Agag.

“Everything we have done and delivered to this point has been working towards this particular moment in time.

“Achieving the feat and being granted with FIA world championship status adds more credibility to what is already a fully-fledged formula of racing and a spectacular sporting product.

“This agreement and announcement truly puts Formula E in the top tier of international single-seater racing.”

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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