Start, Formula E, Mexico City, 2018

Formula E races shortened for 2018/19 season

Formula E

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Formula E has shortened the length of its races for the 2018/19 season when drivers will no longer be required to use two cars per race.

Race durations from next season will be “approximately 40 minutes”, the FIA World Motor Sport Council announced. Typical race durations in the current season have been between 48 minutes and an hour.

DS E-tense FE 19, 2018/19 Formula E car
2018/19 Formula E car livery concepts
The current season is the last in which drivers are required to use two cars per race. The new car being introduced for the 2018/19 season is intended to allow drivers to run a complete race distance without swapping cars.

In another change drivers will also be required to use two different power modes during each race. The higher-power mode will “result in a performance gain of approximately one second per lap while activated.”

Formula E will also scrap the point for fastest lap and award a point instead to the most efficient driver as determined by a “new energy management parameter.”

The council formally ratified the reduction in length of this year’s calendar following the cancellation of the planned double-header season finale in Montreal. The current championship will finish with two races in New York on the weekend of July 14th and 15th.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 45 comments on “Formula E races shortened for 2018/19 season”

    1. the two modes rule, means that they will drop the fan boost?

      1. One can only hope.

    2. I absolutely get the relevance of electric motoring. But why is everything about htis series such a joke? i mean surely that has to be some sort of plot by the automotive industry to sabotage e mobility or something??

      1. @mrboerns

        partly for safety reasons, as an early fatality involving batteries would have killed the series and badly damaged the EV industry. Swapping battery technology was there and waiting designed by Williams, but deemed too risky.

        other reaons for the ‘joke’ could be that motorsport is dying so wanted to try new things.
        Theyre also on record as saying they wanted to attract new people and create more involvement for them hence the fan-boost

        I cant see why they needed to be simply an electric version of existing dying formulas like you and many others seem to think they should

        there are old photos of Grand Prix racing in its early days with a passenger/mechanic in the second seat carrying a tyre around his neck

        1. Well, i see some of it, but i think you got one thing backwards; the old photos look ridiculous today, however back then they were not competing against a seemingly superior type of motorcar and probably looked a lot less silly in period than you might imagine today. However FE is ridiculous right here in the present.

          1. @mrboerns

            FE arnt competing with anyone. This is a city centre formula and theyre doing things their way with the full backing of the FIA.
            Theyve also surprised in the manufacturers theyve attracted at this early and ‘joke’ of a stage.

            Another thing to consider, it’s relatively cheap.
            If F1 switched to electric motors very soon, it would remain the same excruciatingly expensive, unbalanced and unfair Formula that it is now.

            1. Just a sidenote that F1 isn’t unfair. Nobody is forcing Sauber or Force India to participate…, all teams are open to attract sponsors.

          2. Luke Harrison
            11th March 2018, 12:37

            however back then they were not competing against a seemingly superior type of motorcar and probably looked a lot less silly in period than you might imagine today.

            This is not a factual statement, you probably require the use of “in my opinion”.

    3. Robert McKay
      9th March 2018, 18:30

      “Formula E will also scrap the point for fastest lap and award a point instead to the most efficient driver as determined by a “new energy management parameter.””

      Oooh, sounds exciting. Nothing vaunts the thrilling excitement of motorsport like energy management parameters.

      In all seriousness I’m a total geek, and will actually be interested in this, especially if they show on screen how it’s calculated in some way, but, y’know, still.

    4. Robert McKay
      9th March 2018, 18:31

      Also, if they could make Formula E qualifying better, that would be nice, thanks.

    5. LMAO what? Their solution for making the cars run for the whole race is to shorten the race?

      1. @major-dev

        no the solution was the swappable batteries by Williams but motorsport has been sanitized to the point of the technology being too risky

    6. Makes sense. A shame that they have to admit the car won’t be able to do the current race distance, but better that than turning next season into a lift-and-coast extravaganza.

      I’d like to think this is temporary, at least until the cars can go further without problems. And at the current rate of development of these cars, I don’t think it’ll be long.

    7. Vettel fan 17 (@)
      9th March 2018, 18:40

      So the driver who uses the least energy gets a free point? Worse then fan boost and that is something.

      1. Does it mean a driver can go really slowly for half the race and get a point for it?

        Though I don’t think it’s worse than fan boost, it’s sounds pretty bad

        1. @strontium I assume that the current fastest lap rule will carry across, so finishing tenth place minimum. You have to get points in the race to be eligible for a bonus point. So no cruising.

    8. 40 minutes ! Hardly worth all the effort of going. Presumably the governing body and organisers all have ADHD and 40 mins is the longest they can concentrate.
      It should have been battery change not car change. Then 5 batteries per car per race.

    9. In another change drivers will also be required to use two different power modes during each race.

      Really don’t get the point of this.

      In a series about energy efficiency & where it’s all about making a relatively limited amount of battery power last a race, Why would you force them all to have to use a mode that will use more energy?

      1. @stefmeister

        Car development with the team who makes the most effecient car sees one of their drivers awarded an extra point. Doesnt matter what boosts you have.

      2. Zantkiller (@)
        10th March 2018, 3:49

        To make the race more exciting and strategic.

        There is no need to pitstop so they have to put something in to mix it up a bit. This is no different to the joker laps in rallycross.

    10. Formula E will also scrap the point for fastest lap and award a point instead to the most efficient driver as determined by a “new energy management parameter.”

      isn’t saving energy an advantage in itself? don’t get it…

      as for shorter races, 40 minutes is too short! no wonder they are using 1 car only… does it mean that the different between the current car and the new version is only 10 minutes worth of running? i was expecting a bit more…

      1. How many laps can they do in 40 mins? 10?

    11. Imagine a day when the 24 hours of LeMans is electric only but only lasts a few hours.

      Points for efficiency…..its supposed to be racing. Electric may come good one day….in about 100 years possibly.

      1. Meanwhile western manufacturers are falling over themselves to stop the death of the ICE engine by improving effeciency

        China has recently installed 16,000 electric buses in one city and cant build EV factories fast enough, your 100 years is 90 years off

        1. When normal people are all driving electric cars it will be 100 years. 75 thousand pound Teslas for rich people on a moral trip does not count. China 16,000 electric buses so impressive, how many diesel buses are they using? Electric is a complete load of rubbish…..evolution put it a distant 2nd to combustion seeming as electric cars came 1st.

          1. seriously if youre going to sl@g the h@ll out of the EV industry do some research first. Shenzhen has gone all electric with its buses and has more buses in one city than all the USA’s cities put together. The significance will be the accelaration and improvements in the industry supporting and maintaining this policy. China literally cant build factories fast enough for the demand.
            Maybe youre still stuck with an old Nokia small grey screen phone not realising massive improvements in batteries are now powering phones as good if not better than many laptops.

            1. Big Joe, a lot of that “clean” Chinese electricity is created by burning coal though.

            2. @the-last-pope Chinese have one of the highest rates of renewables deployment on the planet.
              “According to the International Energy Agency, new solar photovoltaic capacity grew by 50 percent in 2016. China alone accounted for nearly half that expansion. In the wind energy sector, China installed a staggering 23.4 gigawatts of new capacity in 2016, according to the Global Wind Energy Council.”

            3. I had a Nokia 3310. The battery lasted for fourteen days between charges. Fourteen hours would be a great result from my iPhone.

            4. The best use of electric would be to make a chair for Little JO. Electric will never work its a fad.

          2. I think you’re seriously underestimating how much can be achieved in 100 years. In the last hundred years we’ve developed cars from the model T, the entire aviation industry from the ground up (ha ha), the entire space industry, computers, the internet. Heck, in the last 20 years the world has changed dramatically, and technology is only advancing faster. 100 years is now a very long time. Just remember what phones were like not 15 years ago.

            1. Luke Harrison
              11th March 2018, 12:45

              To play devil’s advocate, we can only do so much as well with certain technologies. You use mobile phones as an example, the last 5/6 generations of phones have been a battle over which one can have a better camera.

              The law of diminishing returns does exist, and we’d see that in Formula One as well if they didn’t keep changing the rules as often as they do. We sit static for 4/5 years, see teams eventually get closer to each other and then bosh, rule change, big gap.

          3. Luke Harrison
            11th March 2018, 12:42

            @MarkP Elon Musk knows Tesla’s are expensive. His solution is a billion dollar mega factories on every continent to reduce the cost. He wants everyone to be driving all-electric cars, to be producing their own energy and to be sustainable. And he knows how he has to go about doing it. So it’s affordable and accessible.

            And these efficiency rules work the same in FE as they do in F1. You make it a sporting rule, the teams have to adapt and evolve quickly. This technology then becomes directly transferable. FE is pushing a green agenda. The way to make that green agenda move faster, is to force people to move faster. That’s what they’re doing.

        2. Did you know the E in ICE stands for engine. So there’s no need to say ‘ICE engine’.

          1. Luke Harrison
            11th March 2018, 12:54

            Fuji means Mountain. But we still say Mount Fuji.

            1. Fuji means Mountain. But we still say Mount Fuji.

              “Fujisan” and “Fijiyama” mean Mount Fuji, where “San” and “Yama” mean Mount and “Fuji” is proper noun. At least do some research before saying things about which you have only superficial knowledge.

      2. “Electric may come good one day….in about 100 years possibly.”

        That’s probably what they said about 100 years ago too

        1. Electric cars are older than combustion engines so it has been over 100 years and nobody really wanted them hence they were not developed. Even these latest efforts are pathetic.

          1. https://www.popularmechanics.com/cars/a1609/4215940/

            Does Jay know cars ..??
            Early 1980s and I was interested and keen on electric cars.
            Main issue in the day was batteries, but not to worry, major advances are just around the corner. That was well over 30 years ago and here we are …. 40 minutes.
            Advancements in batteries will come, but don’t count out the ingenuity of others to find new sources of power. Now where are Pons and Fleischemann.??

    12. I can’t wait to see the back-of-the-pack drivers who will drive extra slowly in order to attempt to snag the point for most efficient driver.

      The organizers of motorsports really need to hire some economists or psychologists or someone to think through the unintended consequences of the incentives they set up.

      1. I would assume you would still need to finish in at least 10th place to get this point, just as you do now with the fastest lap point.

    13. So … why don’t they make each round a doubleheader ??

      More action on track, and more chance to see how the cars respond to a more rubbered in track for the second race, perhaps even with a reverse grid for race 2 …

    14. Still waiting on that announcement of Fanboost being scrapped…

    15. That would equate to 33%, and that assumes that 40 minutes is a limitation of the car rather than a commercial decision. Seems like a pretty big improvement to me.

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