Nissan announces Formula E effort from 2018

Photo: NISMO
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Add Nissan to the list of manufacturers competing in the FIA Formula E Championship. Nissan will enter from season five in 2018, and more importantly, become the first Japanese manufacturer (ahead of Toyota, Honda and Mazda) to enter the electric open-wheel series.

The NISMO release is below.


Nissan will become the first Japanese automotive brand to compete in the all-electric FIA Formula E racing championship starting in 2018.

The move to participate in the growing Formula E series gives Nissan a highly visible global platform from which to spread the message of Nissan Intelligent Mobility – the company’s three-pillar strategy to redefine how its vehicles are driven, powered and integrated into society.

“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, executive vice president of global marketing and sales, zero-emission vehicles and battery business, and chairman of Nissan’s management committee for Japan, Asia and Oceania.

“Nissan will be the first Japanese brand to enter this growing championship, bringing our long history of motorsports success to the Formula E grid. It will give us a global platform for bringing our pioneering Nissan Intelligent Mobility strategy to a new generation of racing fans.”

Nissan cemented its position as the leading mass-market zero-emission brand with last month’s unveiling of the new Nissan LEAF. The second generation of the five-door all-electric vehicle is packed with ingenious technology that embraces the early steps of advanced driver assistance.

The new LEAF replaces the first-generation model, which pioneered accessible zero-emission mobility with its launch in 2010. Nissan has sold more than 280,000 LEAFs globally, making it the world’s best-selling electric vehicle. LEAF customers have driven more than 3.5 billion zero-emission kilometers combined.

“Nissan’s DNA is rich in innovation in electric mobility, not to mention a long history of success in motorsports,” added Schillaci. “It makes sense that we bring these two core elements together by competing in Formula E.”

Launched in 2014, the FIA Formula E championship is a global racing series where teams and manufacturers compete with all-electric powertrains on street circuits set up in major urban centers around the world.

“To have a name like Nissan coming on board is a momentous day for the series,” said Alejandro Agag, the founder & CEO of Formula E.

“Not only is it great to welcome a new manufacturer to the Formula E family – it’s great to see our first Japanese manufacturer entering the frame, showing truly how global the electric revolution is. Japan is a country at the forefront of new technologies, with one of the biggest followings of Formula E. The shift toward sustainable mobility is in motion, and it’s unstoppable. I look forward to seeing the Nissan logo adorned on the new-look cars for season five.”

Nissan will compete from season five, which is expected to begin in late 2018, when the all-electric championship will introduce new chassis and battery specifications.

The company will work with its partner Renault to leverage expertise and development already available, in keeping with the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi automotive partnership’s focus on collaboration and maximizing synergies to boost competitiveness.

Season four of Formula E begins this December and runs until July. The global championship visits key venues including Hong Kong, Berlin, Paris, New York and Montreal.

Further information about Nissan’s participation will be available closer to season five.

Starting lineup grid for IMSA Petit Le Mans: Tom Blomqvist puts MSR on pole position

Petit Le Mans lineup
IMSA
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IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar championship contender Tom Blomqvist put the Meyer Shank Racing Acura at the front of the starting lineup for the Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Road Atlanta.

Blomqvist turned a 1-minute, 8.55-second lap on the 2.54-mile circuit Friday to capture his third pole position for MSR this season. Earl Bamber qualified second in the No. 02 Cadillac for Chip Ganassi Racing.

Ricky Taylor was third in the No. 10 Acura of Wayne Taylor Racing, which enters Saturday’s season finale with a 19-point lead over the No. 60 of Blomqvist and Oliver Jarvis (who will be joined by Helio Castroneves) for the 10-hour race.

PETIT LE MANS STARTING GRID: Click here for the starting lineup l Lineup by car number

PETIT LE MANS: Info on how to watch

With the pole, MSR sliced the deficit to 14 points behind WTR, which will field the trio of Taylor, Filipe Albuquerque and Brendon Hartley in Saturday’s race.

“We really needed to put the car in this kind of position,” Blomqvist said. “It makes our life a little less stressful tomorrow. It would have given the No. 10 a bit more breathing space. It’s going to be a proper dogfight tomorrow. The guys gave me such a great car. It’s been fantastic this week so far, and it really came alive. I’m hugely thankful to the boys and girls at MSR for giving me the wagon today to execute my job.

“That was a big effort from me. I knew how important it was. It’s just awesome for the guys to give them some sort of reward as well. It’s always nice to be quick. If you do the pole, you know you’ve got a quick car.”

Though WTR has a series-leading four victories with the No. 10, MSR won the Rolex 24 at Daytona and has five runner-up finishes along with its three poles.

The strong performances of the ARX-05s ensure that an Acura will win the final championship in IMSA’s premier Daytona Prototype international (DPi) division, which is being rebranded as Grand Touring Prototype in the move to LMDh cars next season.

Taylor qualified third despite sliding into the Turn 5 gravel during the closing minutes of qualifying while pushing to gain points.

“Qualifying was important for points,” Taylor said. “Going into it, if we outqualified the No. 60 Meyer Shank Acura, they had a lot to lose in terms of championship points. So, we were trying to increase the gap over 20 points which would’ve made a big difference for tomorrow. We would have loved to get the pole and qualify ahead of the No. 60, but in the scheme of the points, it didn’t change a whole lot. I’m feeling good since it’s such a long race, and the No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura team does such a good job strategizing and putting us in a good position.

“I’m very confident in our lineup and our team compared to them over the course of 10 hours. I’d put my two teammates up against those guys any day. I think we are all feeling optimistic and strong for tomorrow.”

In other divisions, PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports (LMP2), Riley Motorsports (LMP3), VasserSullivan (GTD Pro) and Paul Miller Racing (GTD) captured pole positions.

The broadcast of the 10-hour race will begin Saturday at 12:10-3 p.m. ET on NBC, moving at 7 p.m. to USA Network. Peacock will have flag-to-flag coverage.


QUALIFYING

Results

Results by class

Fastest lap by driver

Fastest lap by driver after qualifying

Fastest lap by driver and class after qualifying

Fastest lap sequence in qualifying

Best sector times in qualifying

Time cards in qualifying

PRACTICE RESULTS: Session I l Session II l Session III