Michelin conjured up the Pilot Sport EV, especially for the inaugural season of Formula E. The first race on the streets of Beijing saw Formula E racers get into the thick of the action, shod with 18-inch Michelin tyres; the first in single-seater racing. After Beijing, the Formula E circus overcame the hot, humid conditions of Putrajaya, round 2 of the Formula E. The single-seater electric racers on Michelin Pilot Sport EVs handled the extreme conditions well on the streets of Putrajaya, with temperature of at least 45 degrees and over. Michelin personnel were equally pleased that the EV tyres rose to the occasion and successfully delivered consistent performance throughout with absolutely no fall-off in performance until the end of the race. The round 2 race features the likes of Sam Bird (Virgin Racing), former Virgin F1 driver Lucas Di Grassi (Audi Sport ABT) and former Toro Rosso racer Sébastien Buemi (e.dams-Renault).
“The Formula E championship sits perfectly alongside Michelin’s own values, including the innovative spirit has been part of Michelin’s DNA since the company was founded more than 120 years ago,” said Beltran Yturriaga, Managing Director of Michelin Malaysia.
“Michelin is convinced that electric mobility is one of the indispensable solutions in the fight to de-pollute city centers, and is working in partnership with car manufacturers on the development of new-generation electric and hybrid vehicles,” he added.
The suitability of Pilot Sport EVs for both wet and dry conditions, as well as their capability to perform both on smooth racing circuits and uneven city streets, makes them especially relevant to everyday drivers. Formula E’s 18-inch tyre, similar in dimension to tyres used on road cars, is part of the fundamental work done by Michelin towards reducing rolling resistance.
In order to reduce energy loss and increase vehicle range, the tyre’s size minimizes the degree by which it flexes and reduces rolling resistance. The interior of the 18-inch tyre also matches the wheels used by a high number of sports cars, and notably certain hybrid sports cars.
A further innovation of Michelin’s Formula E tyre is that it will have an electronic RFID (Radio Frequency Identification Device) chip built into its sidewall to permit identification of the tyres supplied to the teams. This electronic RFID allows full traceability of tyres, from their production to their return to the factory after use at the race track. This is the first time that this sort of chip used in a single-seater racing championship.
Formula E moves on to round 3 at the Punta del Este, Uruguay from 13 – 14 December.