BMW will be entering the upcoming Formula E season with its own team, a premiere for the Bavarian manufacturer. It’s not the first time BMW made contact with the new motorsport though, as the Bavarians have been involved in the series in one way or another since 2014. However, this will be the first time a car will be wearing the BMW i Motorsport colors and it’s an exciting time for all fans of both the brand and anything involving racing cars.
The ABB FIA Formula E Championship is set to kick off in four days in the UAE and BMW decided to honor the occasion with a couple of teasers. The latest comes in the shape of a short clip posted on the BMW Motorsport Youtube channel. In it we get to see the BMW iFE.18 car in all its glory after it seemingly dazzled innocent bystanders. Truth be told, this will be a landmark for BMW as it will mark the first time the Racing eDrive01 drivetrain will be used.
Developed specifically for the fifth season, the Racing eDrive01 module will be acting as the heart of the car and is made with expertise from BMW Motorsport and BMW i. The first concepts for the Racing eDrive01 were on the test stand for the first time in mid-2017. After the delivery of the test chassis and standard battery, work started on assembling the test car at the start of 2018. Expertise gained by BMW engineers by working closely with the Andretti team played an important role in how things turned out and in April 2018 the BMW iFE.18 was ready.
The end results includes an electric motor, a high-performance cooling system and inverter. All three use innovative materials and solutions to be as light and as efficient as possible. Compared to the tech used in the i3, the Racing eDrive01 powertrain is 50 percent lighter, has twice the performance while being 2/3 smaller. The energy density of the batteries is three times higher, with a twice as high maximum engine speed and torque density. Those look like encouraging numbers and, as usual, the BMW i Motorsport research done for the race track will eventually find its way into production models.