Formula E recently showed off its latest Gen3 car that it says is faster, more agile and "the world's most efficient" racing vehicle to date. Now, we're getting a first look at one on a track at England's Goodwood in the form of the Mahinda M9 Electro with Nick Heidfeld at the wheel.
On its Twitter account, Goodwood said that Heidfeld was "not holding back" and it looked like the car made a clean lap other than a few minor lockups. On track, the Gen3 design certainly looks more subdued and less dramatic than the Gen2, but it's lighter (840kg compared to 920kg including driver) and quicker in every way.
Here’s the first glimpse of the @FIAFormulaE Gen 3 car. The @MahindraRacing Gen 3 car has @NickHeidfeld at the wheel and he’s not holding back. What do you think of the new design?#M9Electro #Gen3 #FOS #FormulaE pic.twitter.com/DsFLMxrGg7
— Goodwood FOS (@fosgoodwood) June 23, 2022
The Gen3 model is very specifically designed for street circuit racing with high maneuverability and speeds up to 200 MPH. That's not quite as fast as the 220-230 MPH top speeds for F1 cars, but the Formula E vehicles do that with less than half the power. They're also highly efficient, with over double the regenerative braking capabilities of the Gen2 cars. Overall, they convert 90 percent of battery energy to mechanical power, compared to 52 percent for F1 cars.
There are now 11 Gen3 teams confirmed with 22 cars, including DS Automobiles, Dragon/Penske, Envision, Mercedes-EQ, Avalanche Andretti, Jaguar, Maserati, NIO 333, Nissan and Porsche, along with Mahindra. The first season of Gen3 will kick off this winter with pre-season testing.