FIA Formula E tyre supplier Michelin have announced that they will introduce a new version of the Michelin Pilot Sport EV for the next season of the championship, and promises that it will be ‘two steps forward’ from the one used this season.
Following the relaxation of the technical regulations at the end of season one, the FIA asked Michelin to provide an unchanged tyre for season two of Formula E, to allow teams to develop their cars with a consistent tyre.
However they say that development work didn’t stop in the meantime, and as such the tyre for next season will benefit from two years of research and development.
The French tyre manufacturer has concentrated on reducing rolling resistance, as more than 25% of a car’s energy consumption is currently needed to overcome it.
Speaking about the new tyre for season three, Serge Grisin, the manager of Michelin’s Formula E programme said, “Our work focused on improving energy efficiency, even though the original Michelin Pilot Sport EV excelled in this domain.”
“Thanks to the use of new technologies, we have succeeded in reducing rolling resistance while at the same time lowering the weight of each Michelin Pilot Sport EV. The combination of these gains will mean greater autonomy for the cars and, no doubt, enhanced performance for the third Formula E championship.”
In accordance with FIA rules, the teams have already been provided with the new tyre to allow time to integrate it with their 2016/17 cars. Grisin added, “As required by the FIA regulations, we provided all the constructors registered for Season 3 with the latest Michelin Pilot Sport EV at the beginning of May.”
“As a function of their respective test schedules, they will therefore able to familiarise themselves with it as they develop their cars for 2016/2017.”
Next year’s tyre will keep the 18 inch rims that were introduced by Michelin in order to provide more similarities with mass-produced road tyres. They will also continue to have a patterned tread to allow them to be used in the wet and the dry, which was a first for single seater racing when it was introduced in Formula E’s inaugural season.