Audi has now completed work on its first all-electric race car, to be used for the Formula E series of racing events. Audi unveiled the new race car at an event in Neuberg, Germany.
The new Audi e-tron FE04, as its known, was developed with Audi’s partner Schaeffler — the firms together comprising part of Team Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler — and utilizes a “completely new” powertrain design.
Dieter Gass, the Head of Audi Motorsport, commented: “Together with our technology partner Schaeffler, we have developed a completely new powertrain. You can immediately tell this by looking at the new carbon housing of the powertrain. The car also sounds different because we’re pursuing new avenues in technology.”
As a reminder here, Audi will be taking ABT Sportsline’s slot on the Formula E grid in the 2017/2018 season; with Daniel Abt (Germany) competing for the team as the driver. Audi represents the first German auto manufacturer to field a Formula E race team.
Green Car Congress provides more: “While in the first Formula E season in 2014/2015 completely identical electric race cars were used, the teams and manufacturers, since the 2015/2016 season, have been allowed to develop the entire powertrain themselves, consisting of the motor, transmission and parts of the suspension as well as the respective software.
“The maximum output of the motor in qualifying is limited to 200 kW (272 hp) and in the race to 180 kW (245 hp). Via the so-called ‘FanBoost,’ power of up to 200 kW (272 hp) can be made available to the drivers for a short period of time.
“… To transmit the power to the wheels, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler in the new season is using a high-efficiency transmission with one instead of the previous three gears. A central display provides all the key information on the condition of the MGU, the system temperatures, which are particularly important with an electrically operated race car, and the current charge state of the battery.”
It’s noteworthy here that this upcoming racing series will be the last to feature the first generation of Formula E race cars. Beginning next year (2018/2019) a radically new design will be used, and the battery packs will be roughly doubled in size — which will allow races to be completed in one car, rather than two.
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