Every year, hundreds of brands, bands, artists, and techies descend upon Austin, Texas for the annual South By Southwest festival — and this year, Formula E is going to be one of those many brands showing up to introduce the world to its product for the first-ever motorsport-focused session.
Formula E will be part of what SXSW is calling the “transportation track,” the part of the conference that focuses on “how technology is radically transforming various transit systems across the globe.” This year, some of those sessions involve addressing homelessness on public transit, evaluating hydrogen vs. electric power for the future, and how to make transportation more equitable.
This year, FE is hosting a session called “No Turning Back: Formula E and the Electric Future,” which is designed to discuss the way the series is changing the motorsport landscape by showing that eco-friendly racing can still be exciting as hell.
The panel, chaired by Formula E chief of staff Hannah Brown, will include Avalanche Andretti driver Oliver Askew, Jaguar TCS Racing team principal James Barclay, and global e-mobility executive at title sponsor ABB Stephanie Medeiros.
The panel is also slated to discuss the introduction of season nine’s Gen3 car, which will serve as the next fascinating upgrade in electric technology. We don’t know much about that vehicle just yet, but what we do know — that the car will be lighter and faster, that the battery is more efficient, that there will be pit stops again thanks to the introduction of fast charging — all sound delightful.
And of course, the very fact that motorsport is included in the SXSW transportation track shows that the series is doing something right. Most forms of motorsport are rooted in tradition and have historically ignored things like their impact on climate change. SXSW, which often represents future technologies, has obviously seen potential in FE.
If you’re looking to attend, the session takes place at the Hilton in downtown Austin on March 17, 2022 from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. local time. To attend, you’ll want a platinum or interactive badge, though music and film badges will be able to attend if there’s space.