The FIA, the governing body of global motorsport, has detailed what it calls a “groundbreaking” electric sports car racing category that is designed to serve as a platform for manufacturers to develop road cars. Read on to know more about it:
- Electric racers to exceed ICE counterparts in qualifying pace and acceleration
- Fast charging with a peak rate of 700kW
- Competitors can choose their own battery layout
Based on GT3 cars
Racing at full-length, permanent circuits, the new racers will be based around the GT3 category (the same cars being introduced in the DTM this year), but the FIA is promising that they “will exceed their combustion engine-powered counterparts in areas such as acceleration and qualifying pace”. The 0-100kph time is estimated at 2.4sec and top speed at 300kph, with up to four motors allowed.
The FIA is convinced the technical regulations will deliver high-watermarks for electric motorsport in terms of range and performance.
Open to EV specialists and current GT racing teams
The body is keen to encourage competition from both manufacturers with existing sports car programmes as well as EV specialists that haven’t previously competed in racing. A balance is being struck between pushing creativity and keeping costs under control.
Depending on the base car used, the minimum weight will be between 1,490kg and 1,530kg, with a maximum power of 430kW (585hp). The weight limit is slightly up on GT3 cars, but the FIA says this is a deliberate cost-saving ploy.
Sports car racing traditionally revolves around endurance races, so for the new series, ultra-rapid charging is promised for mid-race pitstops, with a peak rate of 700kW, giving a recharge time of a few minutes to reach 60 percent capacity. Currently, the fastest roadside EV chargers can hit 350kW.
Charging facilities at circuits remain vague at this stage, but the FIA is promising that “the charging network will be developed to meet the fast charging requirements and, depending on the venue, will include elements of permanent and temporary infrastructure.”
Bespoke battery layouts
Unlike Formula E, competing manufacturers will be allowed to choose and build their own bespoke battery layouts. These will be supplied by Saft, a subsidiary of the Total oil company, which has designed lithium-ion pouch cells for the new series. Battery capacity is limited to 87kWh, while the maximum energy regeneration permitted is 700kW.
Further developmental freedoms will run to manufacturers being able to choose their own powertrain set-ups, with both two- or four-wheel drive being allowed. Torque control will also be allowed at each wheel.
Electric GT racer spec sheet
|Electric GT racer spec sheet|
|Chassis||Road car-based, possible GT3 conversion|
|Minimum weight||1,490 – 1,530kg|
|Powertrain||Up to four electric motors|
|Transmission||Rear- or four-wheel-drive|
|Battery||Saft, based on a lithium-ion pouch cell|
|Maximum power||430kW (585hp)|
|Estimated 0-100kph time||2.4s|
|Estimated top speed||300kph|