While the world's first fully electric racing series has been designed to thrill and entertain, it also aims to educate and innovate. Therefore, Formula E represents a vision for the future by showcasing the potential of sustainability and innovation. But what exactly has been achieved since its first race in 2014?
As a founding partner we were able to observe how Formula E has been driving progress ever since. Here are eight ways Formula E has always been accelerating change:
#1 Founded with purpose
The idea for an all-electric street racing series started out as notes on a napkin. Alejandro Agag, Founder of Formula E and Jean Todt, former FIA President, had dinner in a restaurant in Paris when they collected their thoughts in just a few sentences on what would become the world’s first all-electric world championship. Formula E’s founding mission was to show what sustainable mobility was capable of, by racing electric vehicles for a cleaner tomorrow. Since the first race in Beijing in 2014, Formula E is driving its environmental, economic and social initiatives around the world to create awareness and is ultimately racing for a better future.
#2 Net zero from inception
In 2020, Formula E announced that it had become the first sport with a net zero carbon footprint since inception. The all-electric racing series was able to offset emissions from previous seasons by actively investing in certified projects in all of its race regions. The three key steps in achieving the net zero carbon target were:
Effective measurement of carbon output
Prioritising reducing its footprint
Offsetting remaining unavoidable emissions.
#3 Driving a technological revolution
Despite the fact Formula E is just eight seasons old, the technology around the track always evolved and has undergone wide-ranging changes over time. The championship has waved goodbye to that initial Gen1 era of mid-race car swaps and welcomed the next step in technology with the Gen2 car in Season 5. More power and almost twice the usable energy capacity results in more than 45 minutes of race action, a 0 to 100 sprint in 2.8 seconds and a top-speed of up to 280 km/h. Next year, in Season 9, the Gen3 car will see another leap forward in terms of performance on-track as it’s going to be more sustainably produced than ever before.
#4 Race track to road
On the road, the number of electric car models has increased by more than six times since Formula E’s first season, with more than 175 models now available in Europe. As with the Gen2 car, and the continuing evolution of Formula E’s on-track tech, range and battery capacity has also moved on leaps in consumer EVs. As technology develops, electric cars will be able to go faster and further. The pace of development is incredible. The point at which electric cars are cheaper, safer and easier to operate than combustion-engined cars is not far away at all and Formula E is accelerating that process. Combustion simply won’t be able to keep up.
#5 From zero to a world championship
After six seasons of racing on the streets of the world’s most progressive cities, Formula E gained World Championship status in 2020 to become the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship. This truly puts Formula E in the top tier of international single-seater racing. Since Formula E started its journey, the all-electric racing series has undoubtedly gone from strength to strength. Within a short timeframe, the series has proven itself relevant for the automotive industry.
#6 One of the most competitive grids in motorsport
After a crazy close Season 7 with Nick de Vries winning the championship in the very last race, the only thing that will be predictable in Formula E is unpredictability. The commitment and professionalism of each team is mirrored in the quality of the driver roster. The championship has become a destination for the world’s best motorsport teams and racing talent. In seven seasons, we saw six different champions. This year we have 11 teams and 22 drivers fighting for the title. And with some big brands already confirmed for next season, the grid will become even more competitive.
#7 Girls on track
There is still a lot that needs to be done on gender diversity. With the ‘Girls on Track’ initiative, Formula E seeks to push forward the FIA’s goal of gender equality and increased participation in motorsport. Formula E has been hosting the program since its inception, inviting young women aged between 8 and 18 to discover different aspects of the motorsport industry through activities and workshops promoting inclusivity in an innovative, engaging and positive manner. The initiative is a core pillar of Formula E’s commitment to provide young women with opportunities across motorsport.
#8 Leaving a legacy
With sustainability at heart, Formula E continues to deliver better futures through the power of electric racing. As a role model in this field, Formula E is working with its partners to ensure 100% of tyres, batteries and broken chassis are recycled after use. Furthermore, the power of the cars comes from 100% green energy and when it comes to race weekend activities, it’s the only motorsport series to hold a certification for sustainable events. As our world continues to face environmental challenges, Formula E has and will continue to ensure that everything they do leaves positive, tangible legacies.
To ensure the championship continues to advance its vision and objectives, Formula E reports and evaluates progress annually, using recognitions to reinforce and legitimise its efforts.