Formula E Car Swapping Takes Practice – Video

2 years ago by Inside EVs Staff 6

Car Swap In Action

Car Swap In Action

Formula E racer

Formula E racer

Turns out that car swapping in Formula E isn’t as easy as the drivers make it look.

According to Autoblog, there’s a lot of practice involved with car swapping to get it just right (video of which below).

As Autoblog explains:

“…there’s a bit of an art to the Formula E car swap. First, there’s deciding when to make the changeover, as each car has an imposed limit to the amount of energy it can carry. “We take into account any issues that may result in too much energy being used,” Mahindra Racing engineering chief Vin Patel tells Current E. “Then we plan ahead for any possible windows of opportunity, such as safety car stints or periods under a full course yellow.”

That’s just the planning part though. The art is in making the swapping as cleanly and quickly as possible:

“To make sure everything goes smoothly, each team has its own strategy to car swapping, complete with guarded secrets, based in part on simulation and modeling. For all the different variables that can affect the swap, teams plan for a variety of scenarios. There’s a lot of practice involved, says Patel, “Usually on Thursday and Friday evenings, as well as ‘live’ during free practice sessions on race day. Each of the mechanics who help the drivers have to hone their skills and tailor the process to suit each driver.”

So, it’s not as simple as just jumping out of one car and into another. Swapping takes planning, practice and a bit of luck to get it just right. A perfect swap can mean the difference between winning the race and not even ending up on the podium.

Video (below):  Bruno Senna and Karun Chandhok come in for a car swap at the 2015 Miami ePrix (via YT/Airton Azevedo)

Source: Autoblog

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6 responses to "Formula E Car Swapping Takes Practice – Video"

  1. mr. M says:

    Comments go crazy 🙂

  2. Djoni says:

    It doesn’t seem that critical to me.
    All team are restrained with a minimum time to switch and it seems there is spare moment.
    No light to launch, just a finger count seems a bit old fashion.

    As for the energy management, there’s not a lot of discrepancy between team, same output restriction, same energy capacity at most one could make one more turn but not much more.
    I still love that race, exactly because the cars are so much even, that you can see the driver’s skills.

  3. mhpr262 says:

    Swapping the whole CAR is simply ridiculous. They should have designed the cars so you could swap the whole battery, even if that woud have meant lifting the whole car while the empty battery stays on the floor and then plunking down the car over the new battery. Or they should have split up the race into two shorter sprint races. But the way it is now the electric cars are being made the laughing stock of the racing world.

    1. Speculawyer says:

      They could have a ramp the car drives onto.

  4. Speculawyer says:

    Replace the battery, Not the car!

    It won’t be trivial but it is doable. And it will make it more fun to watch since pit stop efficiency is part of sport.

    1. deborah 007 says:

      Great idea !!!!!!