Audi e-tron FE05 #11 (Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler), Lucas di Grassi, Audi e-tron FE05 #66 (Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler), Daniel Abt

Audi e-tron FE05 performs brilliantly in pre-season testing

Reliable and fast: Audi at the Formula E test in Valencia

Lightning in the sky, electric power on the track — even if the testing conditions weren’t always ideal, Audi was able to gain valuable insights at the Formula E pre-season test in Valencia... and gain the first unofficial victory of the season.

Formel-E-Test bei Gewitter
Things weren’t always sunny at the testing in Valencia, but the wet track also provided the team with valuable experience.

There’s electricity in the air. Lightning flashes over the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia. Fittingly enough, at the same time, 22 electrically powered race cars are being put through their paces on the track. Even though rain was pouring down towards the end of the pre-season testing on Friday, it couldn’t dampen spirits at the premiere of the new Gen2 cars.
At the collective test in Valencia, the Audi e-tron FE05 successfully completed 413 laps last Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday in the timed sessions alone. 223 of those are credited to Lucas di Grassi; 190 to Daniel Abt.

That’s equivalent to a total distance of more than 1,275 kilometers —about the same distance driven over the course of an entire season. And that’s just the mileage put in by the Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler factory team. Additional laps were driven by the Virgin Racing team, who will also be competing with two identical Audi e-tron FE05s for the first time in the coming season.

In the previous week, Audi team principle Allan McNish referred to the Formula E pre-season tests as “an important assessment.” The performance in Valencia might not be very indicative of the rest of the season, as the Formula E races take place on urban tracks with very different driving characteristics. Nonetheless, the experiences gained in direct comparison to the competition is informative. The lesson of the week: the new drivetrain in the Audi e-tron FE05 is fast, and it is reliable.

Audi e-tron FE 05 von Lucas die Grassi mit #11

After a year as champion with the number #1, Lucas di Grassi switches back to his favorite number, #11.

At the end of the testing week, Lucas di Grassi claimed the seventh place in the cumulative starting grid. The 2017 champion was just over a half-second behind the best time for the week. Team colleague Daniel Abt was about three-tenths of a second behind di Grassi, finishing in eleventh place. But lap times were not the main concern in Valencia; the top priority for Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler was gathering data and experience with the new car. We won’t see how fast the Audi e-tron FE05 can really complete a lap until the season start on December 15 in Diriyya, a historic suburb of Riad, the capital of Saudi Arabia.

First unofficial victory goes to Lucas di Grassi

Lucas di Grassi provided a nice side note on Wednesday: at an unofficial race simulation, in which Formula E tested the new racing format for the coming season, the Brazilian was the first to cross the finish line after just over 45 minutes. It wasn’t until the homestretch that he pulled ahead of Alexander Sims of BMW —with a lead of 0.109 seconds. Daniel Abt came in third despite a collision at the beginning of the race.

After a rainy Thursday, on which the Formula E testing took a planned break in order to evaluate data and hold press conferences, Friday began with rain as well. The lap times from the previous morning can consequently not be compared to those from Tuesday and Wednesday. But Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler was still able to gain important experience in wet conditions. New features such as the pulsing, colored LEDs in the new halo system were also tested. In the future, they will show spectators which power mode is currently in use. For example, the new “attack mode,” in which an extra 25 kW of power are made available for a short time, will glow in blue. In Neuburg, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler is now making its final preparations for the coming season. When they are done, both Audi e-tron FE05s will start their journey to the next race.

Lucas di Grassi steht auf Audi e-tron FE05
Lucas di Grassi is excited about getting seventh place in the cumulative starting grid, and about coming in first in the unofficial race simulation.

Great results at the Formula E test

Daniel Abt und Lucas di Grassi had a chance to put the Audi e-tron FE05 through its paces in different weather conditions at the testing in Valencia. The Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler team is satisfied with the results and has high expectations for the new Formula E season.

Daniel Abt starts the Formula E season with his usual number #66.
Along with the Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler team, the Envision Virgin Racing team will compete this year with two Audi e-tron FE05.
The team was able to draw useful conclusions from the testing and prove that the new Audi e-tron FE05 is not only fast; it’s also reliable.
The new Formula E Season is off to a good start for Lucas di Grassi. At the simulation of the new racing format, he gained the first unofficial victory.
A satisfied smile: Daniel Abt crossed the finish line of the unofficial race simulation in third place.

Daniel Abt starts the Formula E season with his usual number #66.

1/5

Along with the Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler team, the Envision Virgin Racing team will compete this year with two Audi e-tron FE05.

2/5

The team was able to draw useful conclusions from the testing and prove that the new Audi e-tron FE05 is not only fast; it’s also reliable.

3/5

The new Formula E Season is off to a good start for Lucas di Grassi. At the simulation of the new racing format, he gained the first unofficial victory.

4/5

A satisfied smile: Daniel Abt crossed the finish line of the unofficial race simulation in third place.

5/5
Formula E test, Valencia
Audi MediaCenter

Audi pleased with final Formula E pre-season test in Valencia

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