Extreme E co-founder Alejandro Agag says the series is in discussions with at least 25 teams that are interested in the new electric off-road competition.
Speaking after the launch of the Spark Racing Technology-built base car at Goodwood on Friday, Agag suggested that preliminary interest is high among a variety of parties, from OEM manufacturers to private entrants.
“Discussions are ongoing. We have 25 live discussions going on with potential teams and five or six OEMs,” he told e-racing365.
“It’s all going in the right direction. But you always build a championship from the foundations – the car – and then you build the rules. Now we will focus on locations and teams.”
Agag expressed optimism at some form of OEM manufacturer involvement in the inaugural season, which is penned for 2021. Extreme E plans to have 12 single-car teams competing in the head-to-head knockout format.
Current ABB FIA Formula E Championship team Venturi is the only party to have committed to the series, while the PSA group which covers Peugeot, Citroen, Opel and DS is known to have conducted internal studies.
Testing of the car is set to get underway in September, while a March delivery date to teams has also been pencilled in.
“I think some will commit in season one, but even if they don’t commit in season one it doesn’t matter because the championship will start anyway,” said Agag.
“Maybe it will be like Formula E: the OEMs didn’t come in season one but now it has more OEMs than any other series in the world.
“I think it can be a similar process with Extreme E, but I wouldn’t be surprised if some OEMs arrive right from the start.
“We have a lot of interest from private teams and to fill the grid with private teams is no problem at all.
“Then, we have OEMs wanting to come for the second [season] but some of them are really wanting to come for the beginning.”
Extreme E hopes to tempt large-scale manufacturers by allowing teams to design their own powertrains and apply brand-specific bodywork to the Spark base model.
Agag affirmed that the unusual nature of the competition, which will travel to five remote race locations on a ‘floating paddock’ ship, won’t impact the speed at which the bigger OEMs commit.
“The uniqueness is what makes it attractive because, in Formula E, we raced all in cities with all all-electric cars which was very different [to other series] and all the manufacturers still came in,” he said.
“This is the same, but on the opposite side of the spectrum because it is more extreme.”