Are you a motorsports fan? Because if you are, probably best for you to sit down first.
Porsche has confirmed that they are going to enter and compete in Formula E. Actually that’s great news, as this means more commitment into electric mobility research (at the sharp tip of performance, too), and makes Formula E more significant.
But this comes at the expense of their successful entry in the World Endurance Championship’s LMP1 category. Not good, for us. 2017 will be their last season.
The company does stress that their sportscars – using the 911 RSR in the GT class of the FIA WEC and American IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship – will still be actively racing. That includes in LeMans as well.
This surprising turn of events is aligned to Porsche Strategy 2025, which will see Porsche eventually develop pure GT vehicles and full EV sports cars, such as the Mission E road car.
“Entering Formula E and achieving success in this category are the logical outcomes of our Mission E. The growing freedom for in-house technology developments makes Formula E attractive to us”, says Michael Steiner, Member of the Executive Board for Research and Development at Porsche AG.
Porsche will maintain the LMP1 team including the drivers, where they will be reassigned to other racing series, the eventual Formula E outfit, as well as examining other fields of application and development ideas.
Perhaps, this is only expected. It’s a combination of the need to focus existing resources (primarily, money) and the increasing pressure to provide more environmentally friendly vehicles. Audi exited WEC beginning the 2017 season in order to concentrate on Formula E; and just a few days ago, Mercedes said bye-bye to DTM for the same reason.