Formula E is a rather divisive racing series. Some people—including us here at Ars—love the fact that there’s some fresh thinking in motorsport. Others find the idea of electric racing cars stupid. These critics think they’re too slow, complain about the lack of noise, hate the fact that the cars’ batteries can’t yet last a whole race, or rail against the whole “fan boost” thing. (OK, we’re probably in agreement about that last one.) But now even some of those gripes are becoming less valid.
In season five, which kicks off toward the end of 2018, we will finally see the Formula E cars get enough batteries to last the entire race—56kWh compared to the current 28kWh cars. And ahead of that, it’s evident that the teams are developing faster and faster race cars, as shown in this new video put together by the series.
It compares Sebastien Buemi (last season’s victor and the man leading this season’s championship) at the 2015 and 2017 Monaco ePrixs. (The Monaco Formula E race skips a year because it alternates with the historic grand prix meeting.) It’s a shortened version of the iconic F1 track; instead of climbing up the hill to Casino Square and then coming down through the tunnel, the drivers jink right and then rejoin the F1 layout. But even when racing over just 1.09 miles (1.76km), the current cars are noticeably faster.