If the recent pace of development at Faraday Future is anything to go by, the electric car startup will fare well when it competes in the Formula E championship for the first time next season. Faraday is to become the core technical partner and title sponsor of existing Formula E team Dragon Racing.
The FIA-accredited Formula E motor-racing championship, in which only electric-powered cars are used, is coming to the end of its second season, with the final races to be held in London this weekend. The Dragon Racing team is currently fourth in the championship and will be looking to build on its strong showing this season by way of its newly announced partnership with Faraday.
"Formula E has placed a significant emphasis on electric performance and connectivity, which makes it a great fit for Faraday Future," says Faraday's global chief brand and commercial officer Marco Mattiacci. "Formula E has leveraged a community of fans and embodies the competitive spirit that we also share."
Mattiacci will oversee Faraday's involvement with Formula E and its partnership with Dragon Racing. His colleague Nick Sampson, the company's senior vice president for global R&D and engineering, will lead on technical co-operation.
"Partnering with Dragon Racing allows us to further showcase our electric vehicle leadership and technical capabilities in one of the most exciting Formulas in the world," says Sampson. "I clearly see Formula E as the right venue to challenge our engineers and technologies in the most extreme performance conditions."
The long-term alliance, which will officially begin from the first race of the third (2016/17) Formula E season later this year, will see the Dragon Racing team renamed Faraday Future Dragon Racing. The team will retain its existing driver line up of Jérôme d'Ambrosio and Loïc Duval, who have been racing together for Dragon since the fifth round of the inaugural 2014/15 Formula E season.
To begin, Faraday, which previously sponsored the 2016 Formula E Long Beach ePrix, and Dragon will seek to develop software that can maximize the powertrain capabilities of their vehicles. This will be the main focus of the 2016/17 season, during which efforts will also be made to refine data acquisition and analytics with a view to improving vehicle simulation models that can help to improve performance and efficiency.
From the fourth (2017/18) season, the partnership will see work begin on the implementation of various powertrain components, software and firmware produced by Faraday. Other hardware that may also be implemented from this stage includes motors, gearboxes and the Faraday Future Echelon Inverter, a power inverter which will be installed into each one of the carmaker's production vehicles.
The team's first race as Faraday Future Dragon Racing will take place in Hong Kong on October 9th.