We go green with sustainable motorsport in 2023 as Formula E starts their brand new Gen3 era while other series prepare for their sustainable futures.
In addition to Formula E, I look at IndyCar’s hybrid testing developments, a hydrogen fuel-powered engine from Toyota, IMSA’s new biofuel and much more.
All in this week’s Sustainable Motorsport Roundup on Motorsport Prospects. Its green news racers can use.
Sustainable Motorsport News
The Aston Martin Formula One team have achieved the ISO14001 environmental management standard. An Aston Martin statement read: ‘Our new Silverstone factory, the first new F1 factory in almost two decades, is designed with sustainability in mind and a focus on energy conservation – and its build includes the use of sustainable materials. Set to be F1’s first ‘smart factory’, it will feature management systems to monitor energy usage.’
I was not aware of this but BlackBook Motorsport has an Electric Energies Commission with a number of very prominent members from the world of sustainable motorsport. “The Electric Energies Commission is BlackBook’s advisory group in the increasingly important arena of electric motorsport. Senior figures representing the major players will be involved in live & virtual meetings as well as exclusive content specific to this fast-paced world.”
Sustainable Motorsport Tech
From Top Electric. “Toyota decided that the right way of action is not to compete with Tesla in the EV segment but to actually make a completely different segment that they will dominate. They saw the potential of using hydrogen in vehicles, as it is the most abundant chemical element in the whole universe. And so, in 2014, the first production hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, the Toyota Mirai [mk1] came out. Whilst it couldn’t directly compete with Tesla and the EV segment at the time, the actual market showed a lot of potential, as the car could be recharged much faster than an EV and could even cover much greater distances, while still being completely emission-free and green for the environment. Even though sales were limited to California and Japan, and even though the car was fairly overpriced for what it was, Toyota still managed to sell more than 20,000 units!”
Lucid, the ambitious US EV maker, has released details of its motorsport-specific electric drive unit, which is used as the spec front drive motor (though currently only for regen) in Formula E. “With incredible power density of 14.7hp/kg and immense energy recuperation, this drive unit will once again transform electric motorsports, following in the footsteps of our revolutionary battery pack in prior race seasons,” said Peter Rawlinson, CEO and CTO at Lucid. “For Lucid, the transfer of technology between motorsports and road cars is a two-way symbiosis. This new motorsports drive unit builds directly upon the groundbreaking powertrain technology developed in-house by Lucid and proven on the road in every Lucid Air. I’m excited by the prospect that some of the technical advancements introduced may in turn make their way to future Lucid road cars.”
IMSA’s new hybrid GTP class has a new renewable fuel to power its top category that’s largely made from biowaste. Marshall Pruett explains in the video above.
Marshall Pruett has a great series on the tech of the new IMSA GTP class. Above is another that looks at on- and off-track battery charging strategies. “Take a look inside IMSA’s new hybrid GTP cars which have unique ways of charging themselves in the garages and when they’re out running hard on track in the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship events.”
The NTT IndyCar Series’ revised 2024 hybrid engine package recently completed its first track test at Sebring International Raceway. Multiple sources have told RACER the Sebring hybrid test was a complete success with a rumored 500 miles of lapping completed without interruption.
EV Magazine takes a look at Formula E in Formula E: overtaking climate change through electrification. “With so many businesses and advocates coming together, the Formula E car is definitely the star of the show. Slowly but surely, the organisation has created a vehicle that leverages the best of electric propulsion and other industry technologies and components.”
Through an official press release, FIM E-Xplorer World Cup announced that EMBX will be the official supplier of modifications for the 100% electric off-road motorcycle category, where the first season of the series will take place in 2023. “Our main goal is to provide our audience with motorcycles equipped with reliable cutting-edge electric technology. With partnerships like EBMX, we are headed in the right direction. Our sport will continue to grow by providing access to fun and high-performance products to amateur riders,” said Valentin Guyonnet, Co-Founder and CEO of the series.
The Africa Eco Race prides itself in following the original route of the Dakar Rally beginning in Europe and ending in Dakar, Senegal. However, amidst flooding in Dakar and concerns about other weather events, organizers have elected to postpone the 2023 edition from its 11–26 March slot to 30 December, meaning it will run through 14 January 2024. It is not clear if the new date will also take the place of a 2024 Eco Race.
Every Little Bit Counts
Every Little Bit Counts looks at small steps that you can take to decrease your environmental impact and increase your sustainability.
Last week I brought you guides to sustainable activewear so this week I am bringing you a guide to Sustainable Sneakers And Eco Trainers. “There are few things we love more than a good pair of sneakers. Perfect for casual days at the office, running errands around town, or going on weekend adventures, we’re always delighted to find the perfect eco-friendly supportive sneaker. But sustainable sneakers that don’t use virgin plastics or harmful dyes? Not always easy to find (although we love seeing more environmentally friendly shoe brands taking main stage!)”
The Big Picture
In The Big Picture, I look beyond motorsport to see what other sports are doing in their sustainability journey as well as the issue of sustainability generally. Hopefully this will act as a catalyst for change in the motorsport ecosystem as it demonstrates that in many ways, all sport shares some commonalities that can be tackled with achievable, measurable sustainability practices.
In A Better World With Sustainable Sports, 17 Sport looks at the opportunities and progress made in making sport more sustainable.
“As changemakers continue to innovate in the world of sport, we’re becoming aware of sports’ negative impact and the role we must all play in achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), specifically Goal #12 for Responsible Consumption and Production, and Goal #13 for Climate Change.”
“Different sports organizations are taking the lead on today’s pressing topics by initiating their sustainability journey. Incorporating sustainability at the core of their corporate strategy demonstrates their commitment to society, to the planet, and at the same time, sows the seeds for long-term benefits for their business.”
Getting to the Track Sustainably
Getting to the Track Sustainably is my occasional column on developments in sustainable transportation that could have some application to motorsport. Since most carbon emissions come from logistics and transportation, this topic is of utmost importance as motorsport works to make itself more sustainable. Here are some articles you may find of interest.
Sustainable Land Transportation
- Go Inside the New Tesla Semi: Features, Screens, Seats, and More
- Latest DfT EV charging statistics show 37,055 devices installed at start of 2023
- UK car production down but EV output surges to new record
- Honda Is Consolidating Its Confusing EV Strategy
- How Much Does it Cost to Charge an Electric Car by State?
- How much lithium will be required to power US electric vehicles in 2050?
- Electrifying heavy-duty drayage trucks at California’s ports
- The Solar-Fueled Lightyear 0 Has Suddenly Switched To Zero Production
- The world’s largest zero-emissions truck is more than two stories tall
- Geely plans to turn maker of London black cabs into EV powerhouse
- Top 10 hybrid-electric vehicles to bridge the EV gap
- Want To Buy An EV? Warning: Charging Stations Are (Often) Broken
- Cheap, Utilitarian Electric Cars Would Trigger Big Sales Without Subsidies
- These Next Generation Wind Turbines Double Up As EV Chargers
- Noon Energy Secures $28M to Scale Novel Carbon-Oxygen Battery for Sustainable Long-Duration Energy Storage
- JCB to unveil brand new hydrogen combustion engine
- Harley-Davidson Will Soon Be All-Electric, CEO Says
- NASA and Boeing Are Teaming Up to Create a Sleek New Jet That Could Burn 30% Less Fuel
- Aviation Startup ZeroAvia Flies Largest-Ever Hydrogen Electric Aircraft