United Nations Climate Change Conference announces Formulec EF01 racing series

Article by Christian Andrei, on December 23, 2010

At the recent United Nations Climate Change Conference in Cancún, Mexico, the Formulec EF01, an all-electric single-seater, was introduced. This vehicle was conceived to introduce a new, multi-chassis, international track-racing series in 2013. French company Segula Matra Technologies developed the car during the past 30 months.

Its powertrain consists of a pair of Siemens electric motors mated to a purpose-built, two-speed transmission developed by Hewland. The target is for on-track performance on par with the FIA Formula Three series, which is based on a 2.0-liter internal-combustion engine.

The rules for the racing series were not yet announced, in particular how battery replacement will be handled during the race and how many miles a vehicle will race. With a 60- to 90-minute recharging time, the SAFT lithium-ion batteries have sufficient energy for 20 to 25 minutes of racing.

The Mercedes GP Petronas Formula One team developed the monocoque frame and bodywork of the new car using a two-fifths scale model in its on-site wind tunnel in Brackley, England.

Michelin adapted new energy-saving tires to fit the power and torque of the motors. Jules Bianchi track-tested a prototype Formulec car at Magny-Cours and Alexandre Premat tested it on the Le Mans Bugatti circuit.

The car is capable of accelerating from 0 to 62 mph in three seconds and it has a top speed that exceeds 155 mph. The ART Grand Prix team will manage ongoing track testing. The Paris promoters plan a 10-event championship on five continents in 2012. [via autonews - sub. required]

Topics: race car

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