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“Strong Test” for Radical New Formula E Car

The first group test for the new Formula E car finished yesterday at Monteblanco…

Photo: DS Performance

The first two days of communal manufacturer running for the all-new ABB FIA Formula E Championship car came to a conclusion at the Monteblanco circuit in Spain yesterday after what was described as “a strong test.”

The group manufacturer test, which was attended by Audi, DS, Jaguar, Mahindra, Nissan, Penske and Venturi, saw more miles put on the cars which are set to deliver almost double the usable energy for teams in Season Five.

Reports gathered by e-racing365 indicate that around 2,000 kilometers (1,242 miles) of combined running was achieved on Wednesday and only a few stoppages interrupted the track time throughout the day.

With external communication restrictions placed on teams, details of the test remain scarce, but e-racing365 has been told that all manufacturers conducted “more familiarization running than expected” with their new hardware over the two days.

The test was not officially timed but several members of manufacturers and teams were on hand to record some laps.

The Monteblanco track featured two specially-inserted temporary chicanes, on the front and back straights, and lap times were estimated to be around the 1:01 mark.

Drivers were discouraged from commenting to media about the test but one driver that took part described some aspects of the car to e-racing365.

“The car has the same feeling as the current car in the sense that it is difficult to drive and is on the on the edge which is a first good sign,” said the driver.

“We ran different modes and when we did it felt powerful and the acceleration was much more intense. Some tracks it will be super hard to drive but in my opinion this is what we want, because this is Formula E.”

Several paddock personalities briefly commented to e-racing365 about the improved cooling systems on the second-gen car, something which was agreed upon by the driver.

“The charging and the cooling works much better and is much more efficient so the progress is good,” he said.

“To be honest, for a first test is one of the best in general I have seen from a new car, so the job by the suppliers of the standard parts has been very good. It was a strong test.”

As revealed by e-racing365 on Monday, BMW did not run at Monteblanco and it has now emerged that one of its trucks actually arrived at the track on Sunday evening before turning back to the manufacturer’s Munich base.

It is believed that all but two of the manufacturers conducted meaningful long runs with the car on Wednesday and other operational simulations such as practice starts at the end of the pit lane were completed during the sessions.

Some cars are known to have run some modified component aspects during the running, this is understood to have been completed to house extra sensors for data gathering.

A further test is scheduled to take place at the Calafat circuit in Spain in the coming months, while an extra bespoke communal tire test could also still take place in early summer.

The new Michelin tires were said to be “very similar” to the existing rubber on the long runs conducted at the Monteblanco track which is renowned for its abrasive surface.

The manufacturers will also undertake their 15 days of private testing before a planned simulated race day, likely to be held at Donington Park, could take place this autumn in readiness for the start of Season Five in early December.

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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