Porsche will be joining Formula E for the 2019-2020 season, and I’m pretty sure everyone involved with the team is praying their results won’t be as much of a disaster as the reveal of the car itself.
I have to hand it to ‘em—Porsche tried something new. Instead of just having the regular ol’ reveal where the two drivers pull a blanket off the new car, Porsche tried to make it fun. It took to the streaming service Twitch and designed the reveal as a game called “Formula E: Unlocked.” Viewers of the stream could help Porsche’s drivers, Neel Jani and André Lotterer, navigate a series of puzzles in what was basically an online escape-the-room game.
Unfortunately, it... kind of fell flat. As in, technical difficulties resulted in viewers seeing a whole lot of this:
The rest of the broadcast—when it was working—was fun. Designed as a POV choose-your-own-adventure type game, it was like watching a spy movie take place in a garage. I’ll admit that it was a little cheesy. But I was incredibly stoked to see a team go out of their way to do something creative, different, and engaging.
The car itself is... well, it’s a Formula E car with a sick livery. Given that it’s a largely-spec series, things aren’t going to differ massively from one car to another. But Porsche did a good job making the format feel personal to the brand by utilizing the familiar red, white, and black scheme we’ve seen them use in other series.
I have to say, I’m a huge fan of the new FE cars and hot they’ve evolved over the past few years. Their open cockpits and wide bodies remind me of the Can-Am cars of the 1970s, except more futuristic and electric.
It’s great to see big names like Porsche making their way into Formula E, exploring more eco-friendly versions of racing. Let’s just hope their actual debut goes a hell of a lot smoother than their car debut.