Formula E is relatively new to the motorsport world. Compared to Formula 1’s 70+ year tenure, it has a very short history. The primary goal of Formula E is to promote electric motorsport in the form of single seater racing. But many assume Formula E is owned by F1.
F1 does not own Formula E, as they are two separate entities. However, both of these motorsport branches are governed by the FIA, which is why they are so similar in terms of their set up and how the series is run. The two are not related in any sense, and simply have similar looking cars.
Formula 1 and Formula E might be two entirely different racing series, but they do have some similar elements. Below, we take a closer look at Formula E and Formula 1 and discuss their relationship, and we even touch on the idea of F1 and FE merging in the future.
What Is Formula E?
Formula E is a single-seater racing series that uses 100% electric cars. Essentially named “Formula Electric,” this series aims to promote greener racing by using cars with no combustion engines. Formula E cars run purely on a battery that provides electrical power.
Formula E started in 2014, so it is still a relatively young series and does not have much history. However, the sport has come a long way since it’s early days and the cars have developed a lot during that time frame.
Aside from the fact that the cars run on electric power and have no combustion engines, the other main difference when compared to Formula 1 is the fact that Formula E primarily runs on street circuits, as the cars do not yet have the power and battery life to race on full racetracks.
How Has Formula E Changed?
Formula E has been around for a couple of years, and in that short span of time it has changed quite dramatically. The biggest difference between current Formula E and the first generation of Formula E is the cars.
The car now features a Halo as is the requirement for all motorsport governed by the FIA. However, the cars are now also much bigger than they were before. This has been done in order to promote the development of the battery and allow the cars to become faster and run for longer than they did before.
The first generation of cars could not complete a full race distance, and we always saw drivers having to switch to a second car during their pit stops in order to complete the race. However, the current generation of cars can complete a full race distance on one battery charge, which is a massive step forward.
Formula E gained FIA World Championship status for the 2022 FE season. This made it the only single-seater racing series outside of F1 to have this status.
Has Formula E Made A Difference?
The main goal of Formula E has been to promote electric cars and develop the technology for the wider automotive world, much like Formula 1 has done with its hybrid powertrains. In short, the answer is yes, Formula E has achieved this goal, but they’re far from done.
Formula E is about much more than just creating electric racing. Formula E has paved the way for new branches of electric motorsport to form such as the off-road Extreme E and the all-electric junior single seater series, the ERA championship, set to become what Formula 3 is to Formula 1.
Is Formula E More Difficult Than Formula 1?
It’s difficult to judge whether Formula E is more difficult than Formula 1 as they are two completely different series. The electric cars in Formula E require a unique driving style compared to Formula 1, which simply makes them different, but not necessarily more difficult. F1 cars also demand a very unique driving style, so it’s hard to compare the two.
Formula 1 cars would still likely be more difficult to drive purely based on the speeds involved. Formula 1 cars are significantly faster than Formula E cars since the batteries of their electric counterparts are not yet strong enough to challenge the 1000 horsepower hybrid powertrains in F1.
The level of competition in Formula 1 is also much more of a challenge compared to Formula E. We see the best drivers in the world striving to race in Formula 1, so it’s the series where most of the world’s most skilled drivers end up. However, many ex-F1 drivers have moved to Formula E, so it’s still a very talented pool of drivers.
Could Formula E Drivers Move To Formula 1?
In the past we’ve seen many Formula 1 drivers make the switch to Formula E. From Lucas Di Grassi to Felipe Massa, there has been a mixture in terms of ex Formula 1 drivers who have found success in the sport.
However, we are yet to see a driver move over from Formula E to Formula 1. Technically, a Formula E driver could move to Formula 1 if they won the Formula E championship. Winning the title would give the driver 30 points towards their Super Licence, and given they need 20 to race in Formula E, this would take their total above the 40 points required for a Super Licence.
However, the problem is that the Formula 1 grid is already stacked with talented drivers, and many teams choose to bring drivers up from their academy rather than picking up drivers from Formula E.
Is Formula E Owned By Formula 1?
Formula E is not owned by Formula 1, and they are two separate entities. However, both are governed by the FIA. This means that the FIA sets the rules and regulations of these series. This is why there are some familiar elements between the two, such as the points system.
Formula E is owned by a company named Formula E Holdings. The chairman and founder of this company is Alejandro Agag, a Spanish businessman. Formula 1 on the other hand is owned by Liberty Media Corporation, who bought the sport from Bernie Ecclestone and the Formula One Group in 2017.
Will F1 And Formula E Merge?
F1 and Formula E will likely never merge. They are two completely separate series with different goals in mind. This is also because Formula 1 is not likely to go fully electric in the future, or at least the near future, so the two will likely remain as separate series.
Both of these two series now appeal to spectators and drivers on a global scale, and merging the two into one sport would be disappointing for many fans. On top of that it would ruin the progress made by both sports and prevent them from developing in two different directions as they currently do.
What Is The Future Of Formula E?
Formula E is likely to continue on its current trajectory of improving electric cars both for racing and for the automotive world. We’re likely to see faster and more efficient Formula E cars in the future. Formula E is the only global sport to get the net zero carbon footprint certification.
What Is The Future Of Formula 1?
Formula 1 is going in a different direction to Formula E. They are also aiming to be net carbon zero by 2030. However, this will be much more difficult to do without going fully electric with their cars, and it’s more about the carbon-heavy logistics of F1. By 2026 Formula 1 aims to use biofuels that are 100% renewable. This would be an important development for the wider automotive world as well.
Formula 1 and Formula E are two separate series, and they are not related to one another. The only thing they have in common is that they are both governed by the FIA. Both these series have their own fans and shareholders, and both have different plans for the future.