NIO333 launch new car, announce Ma alongside Turvey

by Scott Douglas

The NIO team will now operate as NIO333 Formula E after announcing a rebrand ahead of testing for the 2019-20 season.

Chinese motorsport company Shanghai Lisheng Racing, which will use its 333 Racing sub-brand for the team, has taken over operations and research and development.

NIO will continue to act as a title sponsor, with the CEO of the company William Li saying that their tie-up with Lisheng Racing should lead to “great success” over the coming year.

“Formula E has experienced a rapid expansion in the past few years and we are pleased to continue our participation in the championship,” Li said. “We also appreciate the support from our new partner Lisheng Racing.

“With our joint efforts, I believe the new NIO 333 FE Team will be more competitive.”

NIO will have to improve on last year’s poor performance, which saw them finish comfortably bottom of the championship with just seven points.

The new CEO of the NIO 333 team Vincent Wang said that Formula E was the right way for Chinese motorsports to enter the world stage, and that he was confident of the new operation making progress.

“It’s our greatest pleasure to collaborate with NIO and participate in Formula E,” he said. “NIO has achieved great results in the past, and the NIO 333 FE Team will thrive to live on that heritage.

“The championship is a great platform for Chinese motorsports to enter the world stage, and we are very happy to be here.

“We are ready to both join the FE family and to take on the challenges, and we hope that the team will continue to make progress with our efforts. We are also looking forward to see the moment the red lights go out.”

The new investment from Lisheng Racing will also see the return of Chinese racer Ma Qing Hua to the series.

Ma has competed in nine races in Formula E since 2016, albeit with poor results. His stint at the beginning of 2016-17 with Techeetah saw him dropped after just three races after he achieved a best result of fifteenth and was comfortably outperformed by Jean-Eric Vergne.

Ma will be joined by Oliver Turvey who has driven for the team in various guises since the 2015 London ePrix. The Brit has impressed in that time, beating a succession of team mates, although last year’s twentieth place in the driver’s standings marked a low point

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