Extreme E held its Virtual Global Series Launch today, marking just under six months until the championship’s first race in March 2021.
In keeping with the series’ sustainability goals, the launch was virtual and all the teams joined remotely from their various locations including the UK, Germany, Spain, America and Asia as they came together to unveil their car liveries using CGI animation.
Extreme E’s three key pillars - electrification, environment and equality - were highlighted throughout the presentation, which provided details on the championship’s sustainability goals, Legacy Programmes and commitment to raising awareness of the climate crisis.
Extreme E Founder and CEO Alejandro Agag hosted the event, alongside presenter Nicki Shields, and delivered the series overview, including a revised Season 1 calendar which now incorporates a season finale in Argentine Patagonia.
Alejandro Agag, Founder and CEO of Extreme E, said: “Our Virtual Launch has been an incredible format to unveil our Season 1 calendar and the team cars, whilst also refining our virtual experience capabilities – a key theme of Extreme E – particularly during the time of COVID-19.
“Our team has been working really hard behind the scenes and despite the pandemic and the challenges it has provided, we are on track for our first race in March 2021. The series has gained massive momentum with no less than two Formula One™ World Champions signing up with their own teams alongside other powerhouses in the motorsport world, and there is much more to come as we announce drivers in the coming months.”
On the new race location, Alejandro adds: “We are delighted to confirm that Patagonia in Argentina will feature in our Season 1 calendar, and it will certainly make an incredible race experience for teams and viewers alike. However, of course there is a far more serious reason why Extreme E has chosen to visit Tierra del Fuego. Glacial retreat is one of the devastating effects of the global climate crisis, and unless we act now these incredible places will no longer exist.”
Season 1 Calendar:
Joining Greenland, Senegal, Saudi Arabia and the Brazilian Amazon, Extreme E will race in Patagonia, officially replacing Nepal in the season 1 calendar. The decision to change locations, and delay the start of season 1 by six weeks was made due to a combination of the COVID-19 pandemic affecting series preparations, coupled with the additional complexity of getting to the proposed race region in Nepal, though series organisers remain committed to a visit in future Extreme E Seasons.
Season 1 Calendar:
Desert X Prix: Al Ula, Saudi Arabia
20-21 March 2021
Ocean X Prix: Lac Rose, Senegal
29-30 May 2021
Arctic X Prix: Kangerlussuaq, Greenland
28-29 August 2021
Amazon X Prix: Para, Brazil
23-24 October 2021
Glacier X Prix: Patagonia, Argentina
11-12 December 2021
The new Season 1 finale will take place in Tierra del Fuego in Patagonia, which will play host to the championships Glacier stage in December 2021.
Tierra del Fuego is in the most southern part of Patagonia, which is world renowned for its dramatic glaciers and snowy mountain landscapes, but these areas are undergoing rapid glacial recession, as well as suffering from ice thinning and permafrost reduction. The area is known as one of the world’s final frontiers and this breathtaking spot in Patagonia is home to the town of Ushuaia, often referred to as ‘the end of the world’ due to its location at the very tip of South America, with Antarctica to the South.
Carlos Turdó, Secretary of Sports of Tierra del Fuego said: “The presence of Extreme E in Tierra del Fuego will be a historical milestone for our province, due to the high level of international motorsport names involved with the series, such as Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg who both own teams in the series. It is also a unique opportunity for thousands of people to get to know the natural beauties that surround us at the "Fin del Mundo” (End of the World).
“Of course, one of the most important things for us is to join from the southern point of the planet, the message and the actions of awareness about climate change and the preservation of the environment that Extreme E carries out through the technology of electric vehicles and sports practices.”
Ing. Carlos Garcia Remohi, President of CDA Automovil Club Argentino said: "It is a great honor for us that Extreme E has chosen Argentine Patagonia as host of one of its competitions in its international series.
"We share its important message to humanity, how to spread and raise awareness through motorsport. That is why from the Automovil Club Argentino we will be together with Extreme E, supporting it, since they represent the pioneers of tomorrow's technology."
Team Livery Reveals:
Team representatives who joined the launch were as follows: Lewis Hamilton and Marc Hynes (X44), Mattias Ekström and Thomas Biermaier (ABT), Rupert Svendsen-Cook and Jack Clarke (Veloce Racing), Zak Brown and Catie Munnings (Andretti United), Chip Ganassi and Mike Hull (Chip Ganassi Racing), Adi Surjanto (Team TECHEETAH), Miguel Valdecabres and Joan Orus (QEV), Ulrich Fritz (HWA), and Nico Rosberg and Kimmo Liimatainen (Rosberg Xtreme Racing). Each revealed their unique liveries in a virtual environment which replicated the series’ floating centrepiece, the St. Helena.
The teams each revealed their ODYSSEY 21 electric SUVs in their liveries, and representatives from each team were on hand to discuss their reasons for being involved in Extreme E and their anticipation for the first season of racing.
The ODYSSEY 21 is an electric SUV, which can go from 0-100km/h in 4.5 seconds, at gradients of up to 130 percent. It is manufactured by Spark Racing Technology, with a battery produced by Williams Advanced Engineering, a niobium-reinforced steel alloy tubular frame from CBMM, and purpose built tyres, designed by Continental Tyres, which are the most extreme the company has ever produced.
FIA Women in Motorsport
Special guest Michèle Mouton, President of the FIA’s Women in Motorsport commission spoke about her ambitions to make motor racing a level playing field for men and women saying: “For 10 years now we have been striving towards gender equality and equal opportunities in the sport. Extreme E is now supporting this philosophy and has taken concrete action that highlights female racing drivers’ competence. For me it’s a very very important element. We are really supporting seeing more women competing in a mixed environment and we are extremely pleased with this great opportunity for them.
“Of course, the sporting format itself is revolutionary with men and women competing together and against each other. It’s so important for women to have the same material to compete on the same level. This is a chance I had during my time and it helped me to reach the top because I had no excuse, I just had to prove myself. So, a lot of high profile female drivers have been attracted to the series because it’s another platform for them to showcase their talent.”
Extreme E will see electric vehicles competing in five different locations, taking its teams on a journey to five extreme environments around the world, including Arctic, Desert, Ocean, Amazon and Glacier stages, which have already been damaged or affected by climate and environmental issues. The global voyage highlights the impact of climate change and promotes electric vehicles and low carbon solutions we can all adopt which help preserve the environment and protect the planet.