So, we have the Formula E 2021 World Championship thread and individual race threads for the seasons racing antics (and I think there’s sure to be an especially silly Silly Season thread coming up), but what’s supposed to happen with the upcoming Gen3 car isn’t really directly connected to the current season of racing. I thought a new dedicated thread would give us the chance to follow the developments more closely for what’s supposed to be coming up in 2022/2023.
Gen3 is a particularly important phase of Formula E’s development. It will be introduced in Season 9 (we are currently on Season 7) which should start in late 2022 or early 2023, depending on how FE decides to organise their schedules from now on. It will then run for (at least) two further seasons for a three year cycle. It's been said that if Gen1 was about demonstrating electric race car performance and Gen2 was about demonstrating improving battery range, Gen3 will be about demonstrating fast charging capability. Addition of a front axle MGU for energy harvesting means vastly more regen whilst further battery developments means the car will be significantly lighter and more powerful than the Gen2 machines.
So, to delve into some Tech-Specs™ in comparison to the Gen2 cars:
Weight and Power (Gen2 —> Gen3)
Qualifying Power: 250kW —> 350kW (+40%)
Race Power: 200 kW —> 300 kW (+50%)
Total weight (inc. driver): 900 kg —> 780 kg (-13%)
Battery Weight: 385 kg —> 284 kg (-26%)
Battery Capacity: 54kWh —> 51kWh (-5.5%)
Regeneration: 250 kW —> 600 kW (+140%, split 350kW rear/250kW front)
(For those who can’t think in kW yet, conversion rate is 100 kW = 134.1 bhp, so just multiply everything by 1.341)
Dimensions (Gen2 —> Gen3)
Width: 1770 mm —> 1700 mm (maximum)
Length: 5160 mm —> 5000 mm (maximum)
Height: 1050 mm —> 1250 mm (maximum)
Aerodynamics (Gen2 —> Gen3)
Target drag (SCx): 0.65 —> 0.6 (-8%, Gen1 was 0.75)
Target downforce: (SCz): 1.5-2.0 (no change from previous tender document)
(Perrin’s open-source 2017 F1 car data has SCx of ~1.2 and SCz of ~3.75. Assuming frontal area is similar enough I think this should give an approximate relative reference)
What will the race format be?
The big news is the expected introduction of in-race ultrafast-charge pit-stops. The example race-day timetables in the tender documents (not necessarily final) list a carry over of the 45 minutes +1 lap with a fast-charging pitstop of 30 seconds at power of 600kW around 30 minutes into the race. In theory that’s enough to get in about 5kWh (or 10% of the total battery capacity). It’s unknown what the fate of Attack Mode as an in-race might be if these fast charging, but the leading theory is that the pit-stop will replace it as a strategic element. It’s also unknown at present if the elapsed time or energy added in this pitstops will have minimum, maximum, prescribed values or be totally free choice.
Who will be the suppliers?
Chassis: Spark Racing Technologies (same builder of the last two FE chassis)
Battery: Williams Advanced Engineering (Gen1 battery manufacturer, taking over from McLaren/Atieva)
Front Powertrain Kit: Atieva
Tyres: Hankook (taking over from Michelin)
Fast-Charging Infrastructure: ABB (championship title partner)
Who’s signed up?
Mahindra became the first to commit to the Gen3 rules package in November, DS announced they were staying in February and Dragon Penske Autosport is reportedly ready to commit after forming a new partnership with Bosch, who plan to develop a full Gen3 powertrain with the team. Other current (and potentially new) powertrain manufactures are currently evaluating their positions and have until the end of March to make their decisions. The strong expectation is that there will be a few more at least who sign up to join Mahindra and DS.
Sounds great, when can we see the car?
...We don’t know! Reports have said that the plan was to show off first visuals in the first few/months of 2021 so it could be literally any day now. If Gen2’s launch was anything to go by, we’ll be drip-fed teaser shots for a few days before a big reveal. As soon as we have a date and any images surface that news will be posted in this thread.
Alrighty then, by all means follow this thread for updates, ask any questions, share your opinions and maybe learn some stuff as well
Edited by Ben1445, 08 March 2021 - 20:07.