YOKOHAMA, Japan (January 27, 2022) – The Nissan e.dams Formula E team returns to Saudi Arabia for the fourth consecutive year for the opening races of the 2021/22 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship.
The tight and twisting street circuit set at the Diriyah World UNESCO Heritage Site will once more play host to this spectacular double-header, which will be held after dark for the second time, following its debut as a night race last season.
Following a strong pre-season test last month in Valencia, Spain, the Diriyah rounds will also be the first two races for rising star Maximilian Günther with Nissan e.dams. The German, who joined the team in September 2021, has already demonstrated great pace with three Formula E victories.
Meanwhile, highly successful veteran Sébastien Buemi will officially kick off his fourth season with the squad after signing with the Japanese brand since the start of its Formula E journey in 2018.
Season 8 will be the last of the current Formula E regulations, with the Gen2 cars unleashing more performance than ever before. The power allowance has been increased by 20 kW to 220 kW in Race Mode and by 15 kW to 250 kW in Attack Mode. While a new qualifying format featuring head-to-head runs and shorter free practice sessions will make life harder for drivers and teams, it will add even more excitement for the fans.
This season the team will continue to link its presence in the all-electric championship to Nissan’s road EVs. Buemi will race once more in his #23 Nissan Ariya, named after the Japanese manufacturer’s all-new electric crossover SUV. Günther will take over the #22 Nissan LEAF, named after the brand’s well-known EV first launched in 2010.
In Diriyah the drivers will race for the first time with a striking new livery specially designed for Season 8. The design is an evolution of the team’s recognisable kimono-theme, with prominent bright red highlights that further assert Nissan’s mission to demonstrate the excitement and performance of its EV technology.
“After the pre-season test in Valencia, we are ready and excited to go racing again in Diriyah,” said Tommaso Volpe, Nissan global motorsports director. “The cars get a power boost this season, adding yet more speed and spectacle to the competition. This is great for the fans but, of course, it also means that we will need to adapt the car setup to a higher power output while keeping a close eye on battery temperatures. In fact, one of the main challenges that we will encounter in Diriyah will be to accommodate to the track conditions, which can vary from very hot during the day to quite cool in the evening, adding another layer of complexity to the race.
“We are all looking forward to the season ahead; the whole team is very motivated, and we’ll work hard to see some good results on the track. Our goal is not only to fight to get back to the top of the standings, but also to keep using Formula E as the perfect platform to promote Nissan’s expertise in electrification and reinforce our strong commitment to sustainability.”
Nissan e.dams co-team principals Grégory and Olivier Driot also commented: “After a short Christmas break we are starting our final preparations for the first race of Season 8. The team worked hard in Valencia to fulfil a packed testing program – both Sébastien and Maximilian managed to bank plenty of laps and gathered extensive data across various simulations, which will be very valuable for us.
“The track in Diriyah, with numerous high-speed corners, should suit our car package well. In addition, the pre-season preparation and our experience on this unchanged layout will be very helpful for the car setup. The team has scored points in every Diriyah E-Prix since it was first held in Season 5, so we’re looking forward to seeing the cars on track and starting our campaign on a positive note.”
Nissan races in this all-electric world championship to bring the excitement and fun of zero-emission electric vehicles to a global audience. As part of its goal to achieve carbon neutrality across its operations and the life cycle of its products by 2050, Nissan intends to electrify all its new vehicles by the early 2030s in key markets. The Japanese automaker aims to bring its expertise in transferring knowledge and technology between the racetrack and road for better electric vehicles for customers.
“It’s great to be back on track with Nissan e.dams for our fourth season together in Formula E. We had the official Formula E test in Valencia in December, which was our first test session with the cars as they will be for Season 8. I’m confident that we can have a stronger season than we did in Season 7, with the objective to be fighting at the front again, and we will work very hard as a team to achieve this. I’m really happy to have Max as my teammate for this season – he has a lot of experience in Formula E already, so I believe that together we will be able to move the team forward.”
“I am very much looking forward to the start of the season and my first Formula E races with Nissan. The night double-header in Diriyah makes for a very special opening event, and the circuit is brilliant to drive – I really enjoy the challenges it gives us. The track is sandy and more slippery compared to most other Formula E circuits, especially sector two with its very quick, blind corner combinations. It will be a great show for the fans. Of course, there are many new things for me coming into my first races with the team; but the test in Valencia went very well and the whole team is pushing together in the same direction, which made me feel at home right away. I’m ready to go, so now it’s time to get down to business.”
Watch the Nissan e.dams Season 8 kick-off video here.