Electric vehicles MOTORSPORT NEWS

FRD unveils NIO ES8 racer for inaugural China Electric Touring Car Challenge

On the eve of the 1000th Formula One Grand Prix at Shanghai in China, Zhuhai Formula Racing Development Co. Ltd. (FRD) has unveiled the new China Electric Touring Car Challenge (CETC), the first SUV electric car championship under the General Administration of Sport of China, and the China Automobile and Motor Sports Federation. CETC is also included in the annual national sports competition plan for the Series which will begin at the new Tianjin V1 Circuit outside Beijing on May 19. 

Campaigning an FRD-modified track version of the recently released NIO ES8 SUV, FRD and NIO have developed a cooperation to promote China’s electric vehicle competition. The impressive new all-wheel-drive NIO ES8 has already attracted plenty of interest from drivers eager to be a part of this innovative new series.

“The engineering and commercialization of green energy vehicles is expanding, electric personal transportation is developing rapidly, and electric motorsports must be rapidly developed to meet the needs of manufacturers and industrial markets,’ FRD President Kenneth Ma said. 

“At FRD we have changed our focus from the traditional gasoline-powered race car to alternative energy race cars in preparation for our first race in Tianjin, an event which will be held alongside the World Intelligence Conference.”

NIO is a global intelligent electric vehicle company established in November 2014. In 2015 they ventured into motorsport winning the overall championship in the first season of the FIA Formula E Championship.

NIO was also responsible for the stunning EP9 which in 2017 held the Nurburgring lap record for non-series-production cars with an incredible lap time of the iconic German circuit. For NIO the ground-breaking trends continued with the EVE concept car in 2017, ahead of the release of their high-performance intelligent electric flagship SUV; ES8.

The NIO team expects the ES8 to prove its high performance and outstanding dynamics on the circuit and are excited about their partnership with FRD.

“FRD has more than twenty years of experience in modifying cars for competition, in the process, winning nine championship titles across 12 years of the National Touring Car Championship with the Changan Ford Racing Team,” FRD’s Technical Consultant Greg Wheeler explained.

“In 2016, Hong Kong held the first FIA Hong Kong Telecommunications Electric Formula Championship alongside Formula E. FRD was an official event partner, and the constructor of all the vehicles for the world’s first electric touring car challenge event.

“That same successful approach has been applied to our new relationship with NIO, and we can’t wait to get the cars on track at the new Tianjin V1 circuit on May 19.”