Audi fielding Formula E factory team in December in Hong Kong; first German manufacturer in Formula E
As announced in September of last year (earlier post), Audi is taking over ABT Sportsline’s place in the Formula E race with a full-fledged factory commitment which will run under the team name of Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler, starting with the fourth Formula E season in Hong Kong at the beginning of December. Audi will be the first German automobile manufacturer to race in the electric series.
Together with official powertrain technology partner Schaeffler, Audi is currently in the process of developing the new powertrain to be fielded next season. At the moment, the freedom in Formula E granted to all manufacturers is limited to the motor, transmission, the respective suspension components and to software.
We’ve already successfully completed tests with the new components in Spain and in Neuburg and our project is on schedule. The competitiveness in Formula E between manufacturers, teams and drivers is enormous. That makes details in the development all the more crucial.—Head of Audi Motorsport Dieter Gass
|FIA Formula E 2016/2017, Berlin. ABT Schaeffler FE02 #66, Daniel Abt. Click to enlarge.|
Audi has been giving its name to the team since Formula E’s inaugural season in 2014 and in the Brazilian Lucas di Grassi providing one of its factory drivers to date. In addition, the Allgäu-based squad has been able to use the infrastructure of the Competence Center Motorsport in Neuburg. For the 2016/2017 season, Audi intensified the partnership in the form of financial and technical support.
We’ve been supporting the Formula E commitment with increasing intensity in recent months—on the race days, in the development of the new powertrain and in numerous off-track activities as well. That Audi will be the first German automobile manufacturer to be actively involved in the racing series starting next season is also a clear commitment of our brand to electric mobility, on the race track as of December and next year on the road as well with the new Audi e-tron.—Dr. Peter Mertens, Member of the Board of Management, Technical Development, AUDI AG
The fourth Formula E season kicks off in Hong Kong on 2 December and will subsequently take the campaign to South and North America, Africa as well as the European metropolises of Rome and Paris, and other venues.
Team ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport with its drivers Daniel Abt and Lucas di Grassi has clinched 23 podium places, including five victories, in the 29 races held to date and is the current runner-up in the championship.