As previously reported, Nissan has officially confirmed their entry into the all-electric, open wheel racing series, Formula E. Nissan will be the first Japanese automaker competing in the series and will replace the currently existing Renault official works team by the 2018-2019 season.
“As the ultimate expression of the thrill of instant acceleration and agile handling that’s at the heart of Nissan zero-emission driving, Nissan is going to electrify the Formula E championship,” said Daniele Schillaci, Nissan's global sales and marketing boss.
The move for Nissan to enter the electric racing series is said to help showcase the performance capabilities of their EVs. At the same time the Japanese automaker could also use the series to test new technologies which could be applied on their future EVs. Meanwhile, Renault could focus their efforts solely on their works Formula 1 team. Prior to the confirmation, Nissan has not entered an international race program ever since they axed their LMP1 project back in 2015.
Renault has been involved with Formula E ever since the series started. In fact, it's Renualt e.Dams team has won the constructors' championship in all three seasons of the series. With Nissan taking over, they will still continue to race with the e.Dams instead of starting anew. At the time of Nissan's entry, Formula E will also be introducing new battery and chassis specifications, allowing teams to complete the race in a single charge unlike the current rules which require a vehicle change mid race.
Nissan is currently one of the major players in the EV market with the Leaf being one of the best selling electric vehicles in the market. The Japanese automaker joins other manufacturers such as Audi, BMW and Jaguar who currently race in the series. Mercedes-Benz and Porsche have also confirmed their entry into, but will join a season after Nissan's entry.