Magneti Marelli will enter into a technical partnership with Mahindra Formula E team for Season 3 of the FIA Formula E Championship, Motorsport.com can reveal.
The Italian technology company has concluded a deal to run motors in the Mahindra teams season three cars, which will be known as M3Electro’s. Track testing is expected to begin in June.
The deal will see Magneti Marelli become the lead technical partner of Mahindra and develop key aspects of the Season 3 powertrain. The deal will also see Magneti Marelli branding feature on the cars from this weekend’s Paris ePrix onwards.
“We have found a shared ambition in Magneti Marelli and we look forward to the first test of the M3Electro,” said Dilbagh Gill, Team Principal of the Mahindra Racing Formula E Team.
“Mahindra Racing also welcomes Magneti Marelli as a commercial partner and we are proud to display their branding on our car for the last five races of this season and into Season 3.
“Magneti Marelli, which currently provides technical support to multiple F1 teams for their energy-recovery systems, has developed specialized powertrain components targeting high levels of efficiency.”
Magneti Marelli made it public last autumn that they would be in a position to supply teams with motors for Season 3 of the electric championship. The testing of its product was completed earlier this year and is based upon a prototype which ran on test benches and simulation tools for the first time in October 2014.
“Performance, efficiency and reliability are going to be key elements to race in season three,” said Roberto Dalla, Motorsport Director at Magneti Marelli.
“We believe that the solution developed with Mahindra Racing will be able to demonstrate the capabilities of Mahindra and Magneti Marelli which will help the team to be successful in the FIA Formula E Championship.”
At just over 23 kilograms in weight the new motor from Magneti Marelli is believed to be close to three kilograms lighter than the original McLaren built units.
Twin-motor set-up still a possibility
Motorsport.com understands that Magneti Marelli will supply at least one other team in FIA Formula E next season. A third team is also a possibility for the Italian company. A twin-motor set-up is likely to be configured for one of those supplied teams.
This season Mahindra has utilised the expertise of a company called Rockfort Engineering Ltd, which is owned and run by renowned electric vehicle control systems engineer Angus Lyon, to maximise the original McLaren Electronic Systems built motor package.
Lyon, who was also instrumental in the engineering of the Drayson Racing Technologies all-electric Lola LMP1 project, believes that both could be considered going forward.
“For a single motor system you obviously have a lighter and more easily packaged system, but having said that a double does have some good benefits,” Lyon told Motorsport.com
“The interesting thing at the moment is some of the technology we are starting to see in road car applications. Things like multiple-motor formats which provide different levels of efficiency and power. This is an interesting area to look at for the future.”
One of the existing M2Electro Formula E cars will also be displayed on the Magneti Marelli stand at the upcoming Beijing Auto Show which takes place from the 25th of April until the 4th of May 2016 at the China International Exhibition Center, Beijing.