DS Automobiles has participated successfully in the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship since the second Formula E season and is one of the most successful teams. This explores the evolution of DS Automobiles' racing cars, from the first generation to the third, and how the brand uses its experience in Formula E to accelerate the technology transfer to the E-Tense series vehicles.
From Generation 1 to Generation 3: The Evolution of Pure Electric Racing Cars
Formula E is regarded as a test laboratory for electric series models and has been pushing the limits of possible energy capacity, performance, recuperation, and much more since its inception. DS Automobiles has been involved in Formula E since the second season (2015/2016), and the racing department DS Performance was founded in the same year.
Gen1 Racing Car
At the beginning of the racing series, vehicles of the first generation (Gen1) were used. DS Automobiles started the Formula E adventure in the 2015/2016 season with a win, four podium finishes, and four best times in qualifying (pole positions). The racing car generations are always intended for four years, which means that the Gen1 racing cars were used up to and including the 2017/2018 season.
Gen2 Racing Car
Formula E switched to the more powerful second-generation (Gen2) racing cars in the fifth season. DS Automobiles won the teams' title in the 2018/2019 season, with DS driver Jean-Eric Vergne becoming the drivers' world champion - the first double title for a team in the history of Formula E. In the following season, the team defended the title in the constructors' championship, and António Felix Da Costa became the driver's world champion behind the wheel of the DS racing car.
Gen3 Racing Car
The third generation of Formula E racing cars, which has been used since January 2023, was presented in mid-2022. In December 2022, after two years of development, DS Performance presented its new Formula E vehicle, DS E-TENSE FE23, at the race track in Valencia, Spain. With the DS E-TENSE FE23, an electric motor with a maximum of 350 kW drives the rear axle. For the first time, braking energy is also recovered on the front axle, up to 250 kW. This increases the total energy gain in the recuperation phase to up to 600 kW. Due to the high braking power of the two electric motors at the front and rear, the Gen3 racing car has a hydraulic braking system on the rear axle, which is only used as a safety reserve in the event of any technical problems. In all other cases, the vehicle is braked solely by recuperation.