A new electric motor from Lucid is intended to increase safety in the Formula E racing series, the electric equivalent of Formula 1: the 469 hp drive unit is intended to offer the cars of the new "Gen3" generation an additional safety braking system, according to the world automobile association FIA reported to "Motorsport-Magazine". The system was on the race weekend 27./28. In use for the first time in January in Saudi Arabia. The developer of the system, the electric car manufacturer Lucid, presented the drive unit for motorsport a few days ago.
If the driver steps on the brake pedal, the motor installed on the front axle effectively slows down the vehicle and recovers the energy generated (recuperation). Together with the up to 476 hp second motor on the rear axle, up to 40 percent of the energy consumed can be reused. The drive unit consists of a motor, inverter, differential and gearbox. It weighs 32 kilograms and reaches a maximum rotor speed of 19,500 rpm.
"With an incredible power density of 14.7 hp/kg and immense energy recovery, this power unit will change electric motor racing again, following in the footsteps of our revolutionary battery pack in previous racing seasons," said Peter Rawlinson, CEO and CTO of the Lucid Group in a press release . According to Lucid, the system should significantly increase the performance of the race car, the efficiency and the relevance for the further development of road vehicles. According to Rawlinson, some of the technical innovations presented would also be used in future road vehicles from the electric car manufacturer.
In recent months, there have been several accidents in Formula E due to problems with the powertrain. Drivers had difficulty effectively slowing their vehicle. The "Gen3" cars no longer have a classic hydraulic brake on the rear axle. Instead, a classic braking system on the front axle should do the work. The previous "Gen2" models, on the other hand, had hydraulic brakes on the front and rear axles, but there were also several accidents here. The problems should now be over thanks to the recuperation performance. Should there be a technical system failure, the additional braking system should be able to be used. Ultimately, this should lead to more safety in motorsport.
Sources: Lucid, Motorsport Magazine, Formula E