If racing improves the breed, will it do the same for a new species?
The Italian aerodynamic engineering group FondTech believes so.
The E-11 electric race car prototype is the firm's interpretation of a Formula E racer.
As we reported earlier, the FIA plans to debut Formula E electric car racing in 2013. And make no mistake, the racing will be real.
Target specs include performance and weight akin to F3 cars, but the new series would focus (exclusively, we presume) on twisting city street circuits with races lasting just 15 minutes.
Led by founder and F1 aerodynamicist Jean-Claude Migeot, FondTech is confident the E-11 will stay in stride with an F3 racer for 20 minutes. It could even outmaneuver its conventional benchmark; the E-11 packs all-wheel drive for enhanced handling and regenerative braking. Testing in early 2012 should confirm this.
And if this unconventional series has an equally unconventional contender in the E-11, know that its design is no accident. FondTech is full of aerodynamically obsessed engineers with three wind tunnels at their disposal.
As the video depicts, the inline lithium-ion batteries mount below the driver, with inverters behind the cockpit and motors mounted fore and aft. The rest is all about component cooling and vehicle downforce. It’s clear that form follows function, but whether fans follow the format remains the question.