The end of this year has brought some rather very good news for India's status in motorsports on an international stage. Mahindra Racing today unveiled its new Formula E car that will compete in the upcoming E-Prix championship. Not just a new car actually, a lot more will be new. To begin with, Mahindra Racing has signed up two new drivers as well – Jérôme d'Ambrosio and Pascal Wehrlein.The rules of the race have been changed too – Formula E teams will no longer use two cars per driver that were swapped mid-race previously and there will no longer be a set number of laps either – just time.
Mahindra Racing is hopeful of even better results from this year's Formula E championship with a brand new team and Shell as its new sponsor. The team's new race car M5Electro broke cover in Mumbai today with full race livery along with the Shell logo. Besides sponsoring the racing team, Shell will also work together with Mahindra for developing fluids and lubricants for Mahindra electric vehicles.
Mahindra Racing's new M5Electro is capable of 0-100 km/h in just 2.8 seconds and a top speed of 280 km/h. When it comes to the design of the race car, Mahindra says it has been updated and recreated with inspiration from the iconic Indian symbols – the Bengal Tiger and Lotus flower.
The team has gotten stronger with the signing of Jérôme and Pascal. While Jérôme d'Ambrosio has done all past four seasons of Formula E. The 32-year-old Belgian has two wins and seven podiums to his name. d'Ambrosio has also raced in Formula 1 with Virgin Racing when he finished 16 out of 19 races.
The 27-year-old German race car driver Pascal joins Mahindra Racing with an impressive CV. He's raced the in Formula 3 Euro Series where he finished second in overall standings. In 2014, he became the youngest driver ever to secure a race win at Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters (DTM). Like Jerome, Pascal too brings experience from Formula 1 to the Mahindra Racing team.
The rules of the Formula E championship have been updated completely. The race will now last 45 minutes plus one extra lap without any pit stops. The FIA has also introduced a power boost called 'Attack Mode' for which the racers will have to drive off the racing line and through the 'Activation Zone'. The reward for driving on the slower line, the drivers will get an extra 25 kW of power.
Another new Formula E initiative is the 'Fanboost'. Five drivers will receive Fanboost from fan voting ahead of the race, which translates to a significant burst in power that the drivers can use in a five-second window during the second half of the race. The recipe for the new Formula E season sounds rather brilliant. Do catch the race on the tele and we too will be cheering for the Indian team!