Power increase for season four given a cautious welcome

Credit: Formula E

The FIA’s decision to raise the power available to drivers during races has been cautiously welcomed by drivers and teams.

In addition to confirming the calendar for the 2017-18 season, the FIA revealed that they would allow an extra 10kW of power to be used, raising it from 170kW to 180kW.

While this is still below the 200kW rate allowed during qualifying, drivers have said that they are looking forward to having more available to them during the race, and the continuing trend to make Formula E faster.

Venturi driver Maro Engel told Motorsport.com, “I think it is extremely positive and it will make a difference. The pace will be quicker and battery temperatures will change and it will make a difference related to the data which has been gathered this year and there will be faster races as well.

“In general the roadmap is there to continuously keep making Formula E faster and it is a positive idea as far as I am concerned.”

And while MS Amlin Andretti driver Robin Frijns also welcomed the move, he said that the increase in power will be negated by the increase in race distances, saying “Every bit [of power] helps but then we need to stop making the races longer as the more energy we get the more we use too.”

This view was echoed by his Andretti boss Roger Griffiths, who also raised some concerns around the extra battery heat that will be caused by the increase.

Talking to Motorsport.com, Griffiths said “I think the effect on energy management will come down to what the FIA decides to on race length.

“If the races are longer or even the same length, having the extra power will make it a little harder to complete the race, but perhaps people will have made efficiency improvements to their overall powertrains so this may compensate for some of it.

“The other aspect is that the increased power may bring marginally more heat into the system as the average power around the lap will increase slightly.”