Nissan will enter the all-electric Formula E racing series at the end of next season, taking the place of the Renault e.dams team.
Becoming the first Japanese car manufacturer to enter the sport, it will join for the fifth season in 2018/19, when new powertrains will be used in the all-electric series. These have increased range that will not force drivers to swap cars halfway through a race as they do now.
Renault, which works in alliance with Nissan and Mitsubishi Motors, has also announced that it will be leaving Formula E to focus on its Formula 1 project at the end of the upcoming season four. The Renault e.dams team has dominated the sport in its early years, winning the team title in all of the first three seasons.
Thierry Koskas, Groupe Renault executive vice-president of sales and marketing, said: “As a pioneer in electric vehicles, we have learnt a tremendous amount about high-performance EVs and energy management that directly benefits our EV customers.
“After season four we will focus resources on our aggressive goals for Formula 1 and we look forward to continuing to gain benefits from motorsport racing across the alliance with Nissan.”
— Nissan Motor (@NissanMotor) October 25, 2017
Daniele Schillaci, executive vice-president of global marketing and sales, zero-emission vehicles and battery business, said joining the championship would “give us a global platform for bringing our pioneering Nissan Intelligent Mobility strategy to a new generation of racing fans”.
He said: “Nissan’s DNA is rich in innovation in electric mobility, not to mention a long history of success in motorsports. It makes sense that we bring these two core elements together by competing in Formula E.”
Formula E is drawing attention from car manufacturers across the globe as they look to speed up development of electric vehicle technology. BMW will also enter a factory team in the championship from season five, while Porsche and Mercedes-Benz will join in season six.