Jaguar has created the world’s first production battery electric vehicle race series. The Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY will be the support series for the FIA Formula E Championship, taking place on the same weekends at the same city circuits, starting in late 2018.
The championship will be featuring cars based on Jaguar’s first battery electric vehicle – the Jaguar I-PACE, supporting the launch of the performance SUV, which hits the road later next year. Up to 20 modified electric I-PACE racecars will be on the grid, using the same circuit layout as Formula E with the planned schedule consisting of a practice and qualifying session, followed by a 30-minute race.
Additionally, the new series offers a complete ‘Arrive and Drive’ package for 20 drivers at each event, including professional technical support, spare parts and equipment. Technical specifications, schedule and participation costs will be released in 2018, with venues and calendar subject to FIA approval.
Jaguar Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations (SVO) in Warwickshire, UK, will build the racecars. “Jaguar returned to racing in 2016 with the mission ‘Race to Innovate’. With the launch of the Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY we have strengthened our commitment to battery electric vehicles, international motorsport and Formula E. We’ve always said we want to prove our electrification technologies on the track – this is the proof.
I am looking forward to seeing a full grid of Jaguar I-PACE racecars in late 2018, soon after the first Jaguar I-PACE hits the road in Europe. Ultimately this innovative series will enhance the technology in our future electric vehicles and benefit our customers,” said Gerd Mäuser, Chairman of Jaguar Racing.
“Jaguar has been a welcome addition to Formula E and a fantastic advocate for electric street racing. I’m delighted that in addition to the Panasonic Jaguar Racing team competing on the Formula E grid, we will be adding to our race day schedule with a competitive new support series for season five.
The Jaguar I-PACE eTROPHY will bring more entertainment for fans in-between sessions and will be a further testament to the advances in battery technology and exciting electric performance. I hope Jaguar will allow me to bring my race suit and helmet… and maybe get behind the wheel myself!” added Alejandro Agag, Founder and CEO of Formula E.
The announcement follows news that the British government is to ban the sale of petrol and diesel cars from 2040 and reinforces Jaguar Land Rover’s commitment to electrification – from 2020 all new model lines will be electrified, with either hybrid or battery technology.