The Formula One racing season is in full swing, set with regulation changes, political spats and the occasional tyre explosion.
A number of new rules were put in place several years ago to try and make the sport more environmentally friendly, which included switching refuelling for tyre changes. However, some argue the sport is now mired in red tape to the point that races simply aren't so interesting anymore -- but could the introduction of electric vehicle (EV) racing change this?
The first all-electric vehicle racing season is due to start next September. Dubbed Formula E, the competition is backed by the FIA, which is also behind F1, the World Rally Championship and the World Touring Car Championship.
The race is being run as an "open championship," which means that cars can be designed and constructed how each team wishes, as long as it conforms to the FIA's technical specs.
This is a major breakaway from most championships, in which cars are often required to run based on a specific set of engines, tyres, and compositions. There are, of course, electric vehicle capability limitations, but it is hoped Formula E will prompt further development of the technology.
The Formula E scheduled race locations include London, Rome, Beijing and Bangkok. So far, three teams have signed up to compete.