Nissan has made its debut in the ABB FIA Formula E championship with former series champion Sebastien Buemi tasked with shaking down both cars today at Circuit Ricardo Tormo.
Buemi was ninth fastest in the morning session and improved one spot in the afternoon to set the eighth fastest time of the day with a time of 1:18.100.
Official 'Gen 2' debut
The Formula E victory, pole position, and fastest race lap record holder drove both cars today as Nissan e.dams officially debuted its "Gen 2" Formula E car.
The new Formula E cars, which feature a new battery, powertrain, inverter, tires, gearbox, and aerodynamics, proved to be significantly faster than the previous generation car. Buemi’s fastest time was 3.722 seconds faster than last year’s fastest overall time at the Valencia pre-season test.
As the first Japanese company to enter Formula E, Nissan has drawn on its track record of selling more than 365,000 Nissan LEAF vehicles since introducing the model in 2010.
The company has used its experience in building electric vehicles for the road to develop the all-new powertrain for its Formula E race car, which features a bespoke electric motor, inverter, and gearbox.
'It has been a positive day'
Testing at Valencia continues tomorrow with two sessions from 9am to 12pm and 2pm to 5pm.
"We had a lot of things to test, and it was our first time to see where we stand compared to the rest of the competition. It has been a positive day. I’m quite happy because we were able to test lots of things and we have a lot of data to analyze," says Sebastien Buemi - Nissan e.dams driver.
"I’m pleased with the performance because I know we could have ended up a lot better. I’m not massively happy with P8, but I know we had quite a bit of margin and that is the most important thing. I feel we can compete with the top guys," says Buemi.
'We don't look too bad'
"It is still difficult to know where we are compared to the opposition because you don’t know how much power they are using or whether they are doing a race simulation.
"But the fastest lap is generally done with maximum power, and in that regard, we don’t look too bad," concludes Buemi.
Nissan global motorsport director Michael Carcamo is thrilled to be out on track competing with Buemi doing testing.
"We’ve been working on our Formula E program for quite some time, and it was a thrill for everyone at Nissan to finally see our cars on the track.
"We know the competition is very intense in this championship and we have realistic expectations for our first week on track with all the other manufacturers and teams," he says.
"However, we were certainly pleased to see Sebastien P4 on the timesheets with 15 minutes to go before some of our rivals went for a time at the end of the day.
"We’re looking forward to getting back on track tomorrow and recording more valuable development miles," Carcamo adds.