Audi’s Le Mans winner and former F1 driver Allan McNish has assumed responsibility for coordinating the German marque’s Formula E project at Audi Sport. McNish will be on site in China for the season opener alongside the Deputy Head of Audi Motorsport, Dieter Gass as Team ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport compete in Hong Kong, under the banner of the Four Rings for the first time.
On the road to a fully factory-backed commitment, Audi is using the 2016/2017 season to learn more about the world’s first fully electric racing series and to prepare for the 2017/2018 season.
Team ABT Schaeffler Audi Sport has prepared intensively for the new Formula E season, and has thoroughly tested the ABT Schaeffler FE02 electric race car. After the completion of the official tests at Donington Park on September 7, above all dyno tests were on the agenda. Both the team’s drivers, Daniel Abt and Lucas di Grassi, practiced on the near three-kilometer-long track in the Hong Kong harbor in the simulator and delivered valuable information for setting up the car and the software to the team’s engineers.
“Similar to the DTM, the Formula E race cars are homologated and cannot be altered during the season,” says Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich. “At the same time, the software, which is so crucial to energy management in Formula E, can be constantly worked on.
“In this field, we have lots of experience from the FIA World Endurance Championship which we can use to support the team.”
In mid-September, the Formula E organization loaded the team’s four race cars onto a plane and shipped them to Hong Kong. They were delivered to the circuit this morning and handed back. In total, the team has sent about eight tons of material on the Formula E world tour.
The first step now is to set up the temporary pits in the paddock of the race track, which is located near the famous Star Ferry terminal in the Hong Kong harbour. Subsequently, the team will start working on the race cars and present them to the FIA for technical scrutineering, including the sealing of the motors, inverters, transmissions and other components.