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Formula E in talks on open batteries and custom bodywork for ‘Gen4’

Following the launch of the championship’s new Gen3 car at the Yacht Club de Monaco, which will make its debut in the 2022-23 season, a number of manufacturers inside and outside Formula E have discussed the directions future of the championship by following the rules of the third generation.

Reigle, who was confirmed to join the board of motorsport technology company Griiip on Friday, said the manufacturers involved had shared consensus on most talking points regarding the future direction of the championship.

He added that any change in technology should be approached with an attractive cost cap figure to ensure manufacturers can continue to be involved without spending spiraling out of control.

“What we did in Monaco was the, I don’t like to call it the Gen4 session, but it was [discussing the] future of electric mobility, future of Formula E,” Reigle told Motorsport.com.

“And the idea was really to try to narrow the conversation around the scope of technical development, because we wanted to hear from manufacturers about what’s important to them.

Launch of the new Formula E Gen3 car in Monaco

Photo by: Simon Galloway / Motorsport footage

“We have views ourselves, and it’s our job ultimately to balance the demands of the manufacturers against the sporting proposition and against the fan proposition. Simply put, everyone wants the same thing. , right? They want great sport and they want more fans.

“We also had a number of manufacturers who weren’t in the championship, who came [to the Monaco meeting] and then beyond that, we had a certain number of manufacturers who did not come to Monaco, who nevertheless said: “we want to discuss your roadmap with you”.

“I don’t think everyone expects all of their ideas to fit into the program, but it’s about making sure they’re heard, making sure it reflects a collective discussion .

“We’re seeing interest in this round of – I’ll call it Gen4 – 2026, saying, ‘what is the scope of development, and how could we participate?’

“Once we have the cost cap in place, then we can have a very rational discussion with manufacturers about what’s important.”

Reigle explained that the discussions helped isolate some of the manufacturers’ most pressing desires for the future of the championship beyond Gen3, and identified three areas with the most “momentum” – including the opening of the battery technology.

Porsche Motorsport director Thomas Laudenbach has previously said the manufacturer wants Formula E battery technology to be open to some degree, although NIO 333 technical chief Duncan Laycock has warned this could create a wider gap between the teams.

However, Reigle counters that the battery could theoretically only be opened up in small quantities, either by offering an additional range of suppliers or in the energy management systems used.

Formula E launched the Gen3 car in Monaco

Formula E launched the Gen3 car in Monaco

Photo by: Simon Galloway / Motorsport footage

“I think the three areas where there’s the most momentum, and I wouldn’t say consensus, but kind of a common interest are battery, powertrain and aero,” he said. added.

“I’m not an engineer, but it’s not necessarily the whole battery – it could be like the energy management system. So there’s the battery, the front drivetrain and whether we should be all-wheel drive All-wheel drive all the time, or all-wheel drive once in a while.

“So definitely the front axle drive and then the bodywork. But nobody wants to get into an aero game in the wind tunnel, but if you have aero tolerances, the idea of ​​a different Porsche than a Jaguar, I think, is something that might be interesting.”

Reigle also explained his new role in Griiip – a company with its data collection and analysis tools in DTM – saying: “The main responsibility will really be to work with Tamir Plachinsky, the founder, and his team just for l ‘to help guide him through the opportunities and how to go to market and serve as a bit of advice to him as CEO.”

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