Remember how everyone hated the first few seasons of Formula E’s pit stops? There was no recharging or swapping batteries; they swapped whole cars, going from one depleted car to an identical, fully-charged one that looked like nothing had happened. Remember how Formula E developed a higher-capacity battery that could last the whole race without requiring any pit stops? Yeah, well. That’s not really working. Formula E wants to bring pit stops back, and it wants fast-charging to do it.
The current Gen2 FE car is capable of lasting a whole race without needing a charge as long as you don’t over-drive it and kill all your power. But FE’s new CEO Jamie Reigle wants to bring back the excitement of the pit stops with fast charging for the Gen3 cars, Motorsport.com reports.
Reigle, who took over from former FE CEO Alejandro Agag last month, is calling this idea “the big one.” Here’s how he sees the evolution of the series:
But the important theme is that we’re developing technology to advance the adoption of EVs and that’s kind of the core principal.
Gen1 was all about evidencing that electric vehicles are viable, can race, can compete and that was delivered.
Gen2 was all about demonstrating battery longevity - we could have consumer inhibitors to EV adoption, you might worry about range, so we designed a set of products, a generation car to help address that issue.
From what I hear at the time it was like ‘well we’re not going to have a pitstop then, right?’.
So for Gen3, as we think about why might a consumer not adopt an electric vehicle, there’s a perception perhaps around charging availability and ‘how quickly I can get my car charged?’ [questions].
He raises a good point. The whole purpose of FE is to showcase burgeoning electric tech in order to get people interested and bust some myths in the process. Its whole schtick is to evolve along with whatever the greater populace’s big concerns about electric vehicles are. Plenty of automakers have developed EVs with impressive ranges. Now it’s time we start focusing on faster charges.
This is just an idea being floated around at the moment, since the Gen3 car won’t even be introduced until the 2022/23 season. But if it does end up going through, I think we’ll be in for some fun-as-hell races.