Extreme E Is Back for Its Biggest Season Yet

More races, more teams and a new qualifying format: It might be time you start paying attention to electric off-road race series Extreme E.

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A photo of the Hummer Extreme E car jumping on track.
Extreme E: moving on up.
Photo: Extreme E

While series like NASCAR and Formula 1 steal most of the racing headlines these days, there are a few fledgling motorsports looking to change the status quo away from gas-powered racing. One such series is all-electric off-road racing Extreme E, which launched in 2021 with the aim of putting sustainability at the heart of racing. Now entering its third season, the sport is shaking things up ahead of its biggest year yet.

Since 2021, Extreme E has been shipping teams around the world to far-flung locations where they spend a day racing and then work with ecologists to launch sustainability initiatives in the places they race. To cut its impact from race weekends, the series also re-purposed an old mailing ship to cart all its cars and gear to each race, minimizing the use of air freight.

Now that it’s got a few seasons under its belt, the all-electric series is making some big changes ahead of its 2023 kick off in Saudi Arabia next month. For the 2023 season, Extreme E will run ten races, instead of five, will roll out a new qualifying format and welcomes a new team to the paddock.

A photo of five Extreme E cars racing off the line.
This will become a familiar sight this year.
Photo: Extreme E

Let’s start with the changes to the calendar. Each weekend on the calendar will now be a double-header, with races taking place on both the Saturday and Sunday. This year, those races will see Extreme E take to Saudi Arabia, Scotland, Italy, Chile and either the Amazon or the U.S.,; that race is still a bit up in the air.

But, the format of each race day is also changing. For 2023, qualifying in Extreme E will take the form of two rounds, each consisting of two heats pitting five cars against each other. Classification points will be awarded for the two heats, with the five top-scoring teams going through to the grand final race, which will set the podium and award championship points.

The five teams that don’t make it through to the grand final will run in the Redemption Race, which will decide positions six through ten for the day and awards further championship points.

A photo of three Extreme E cars racing on sand.
More cars, more races and more action.
Photo: Extreme E

But it’s not just the races in which points are handed out this year. In each qualifying heat, a single championship point will be awarded to the winner. The Continental Traction Challenge will also return in 2023; this program awards two points to the team that sets the fastest time, a combination of both the male and female drivers’ fastest times, through an allocated sector on the circuit.


So, in summary, there will be two rounds of qualifying, each featuring two races of five cars. The five best-scoring teams will progress to the grand final and the five worst-scoring will enter the redemption race. Then, all of this is reset and repeated once again the next day. Got it?

If that wasn’t enough newness for you, then Extreme E will also welcome a new team to the paddock this year. Alongside teams like McLaren and Abt Cupra, a new squad fielded by UK DJ Carl Cox will also race in Extreme E in 2023.

A photo of DJ Carl Cox with a racing driver in the Extreme E paddock.
Carl Cax (L) joines the Extreme E paddock this year.
Photo: Extreme E

Carl Cox Motorsport will line up on the grid for the first race of the season in Neom, Saudi Arabia, on March 11th.


The Full 2023 Extreme E Calendar Comprises:

  • Neom, Saudi Arabia: March 11th & 12th
  • Scotland, UK: May 13th & 14th
  • Sardinia, Italy: July 8th & 9th
  • Amazon or USA: September 16th & 17th
  • Chile: December 2nd & 3rd