Elements of Formula E’s Attack Mode will be evaluated on a Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY car this evening in New York City ahead of a likely rollout to the single-make electric series next season.
The mechanism, which provides drivers with a power boost when driving over a specific pre-determined section of the race track, was introduced into the ABB FIA Formula E Championship this season and has been under evaluation by Jaguar for its eTROPHY.
According to series director Marion Barnaby, there’s a “strong possibility” of Attack Mode being implemented for the 2019-20 season, which will also see other changes to the largely production SUV.
E-racing365 understands that a trial will occur Friday evening on the Brooklyn Street Circuit to confirm the car’s feasibility with the GPS beacons that are already installed by Formula E.
“There will be some track activity tonight,” Barnaby told e-racing365, although declining to go into detail.
Barnaby explained that Attack Mode could help provide additional passing opportunities, with drivers often struggling to overtake due to the size of the vehicle on tight street circuits.
“It’s a strong possibility because we need to give the car a new [element] for next year,” she said.
“We’re following Formula E and their ethos as well. You’ll see when the Attack Mode comes on, it would be the same sort of look and feel, so we have to make sure we’re fully comfortable with it.
“It’s still in the testing program stage at the moment but we’ve looked at how it could work with the overtaking areas.
“We think it would be the right thing to do.
“And it would also be more overtaking, which would make it a better race.”
She said it’s still undetermined if the series would use the same locations implemented by Formula E at each circuit.
Audible Element Among Possible Upgrades for 2019-20
Barnaby confirmed that adding an audible element to the I-PACE has been something they’ve been “testing” for possible implementation for the coming season.
Unlike Formula E cars, which have high-revving electric motors, the I-PACE features a strictly production powertrain, which has resulted in no audible sound coming from the EV racer other than the brakes and tires.
She added that changes in the braking system have also been under evaluation.
“We’re not ready to announce yet but there’s certain elements we’re looking at,” Barnaby said.
“The ethos for us is road-to-race and we look at things that move across from the race car to the road car. We’re looking at development between the I-PACE and what we do on the track.
“There’s a few things we can change that hasn’t worked because we need to make some areas stronger. It’s been a big learning year for us.”
Barnaby confirmed the cars will return to M-Sport’s headquarters in mid-August before going through a “refresh” period prior to pre-season testing for the arrive-and-drive program.
“October will be the first time we’ll see the look-and-feel of the changes we’ve made to them,” she said.