Driver

SEBASTIAN ERIKSSON ON DRIVING RX2E

Thursday 26th of November 2020

FIA World Rallycross Championship race-winner Sebastian Eriksson is confident that the new FIA RX2e Championship car will generate ‘great racing and a spectacular show for the fans’, describing the first-ever FIA electric rallycross championship as ‘a win-win for everybody’.

Earlier this month, Eriksson spent several days testing the RX2e car at full power at Spain’s Circuit Calafat, building upon the work already completed in development of the new car. The Swede revealed that significant progress has been made in every area ahead of the inaugural campaign in 2021, describing RX2e as ‘the perfect stepping-stone towards the World Championship’.

“It was the first time I had driven an electric car and I thought it would feel quite different, but the truth is that it doesn’t feel that different at all. It’s still a rallycross car at the end of the day – and a faster and more powerful rallycross car at that! QEV Technologies and Olsbergs MSE have done a great job in developing this car and are continuing to make progress – it’s all about fine-tuning now. QEV have a lot of experience from Formula E, but rallycross adds gravel, jumps and four wheel-drive into the equation, which is where OMSE’s expertise comes in," said Eriksson.

“The chassis is quite similar to the existing Supercar Lites (RX2), and while there’s obviously no gearbox, what you do have is a lot of torque and instant power, which represents a big step forward in terms of driveability. There are also a lot of things to play with that weren’t possible before, such as changing the torque bias and ‘regen’ engine braking between the front and rear axles. With a motor at the front and another one at the rear, there’s also better weight distribution, which improves the handling and produces greater stability, particularly through high-speed corners. That makes the car very easy to trust, which is really confidence-inspiring as a driver and will encourage competitors to push right to the limit. That in turn will generate great racing and a spectacular show for the fans – it’s a win-win for everybody.

“There was definitely more noise than I was expecting, too – the reducers generate a lot of transmission sound, and clearly you’ve got the gravel spray as well. The noise is different to that of a combustion car, of course it is, but it’s still noise and the racing will have fans right on the edge of their seats. I can guarantee they won’t be disappointed! There will obviously be new things for drivers to learn, but if they are serious about forging a career in this discipline, they have to learn, because the whole sport will be electric soon – it’s the way the entire automotive industry is going. With the World Championship similarly transitioning to electric power in 2022, RX2e is the perfect stepping-stone.”

 

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