That’s a wrap

A win on the final weekend of competition provides a fitting end stop to the brand’s Formula E journey.

After seven tremendously successful years in Formula E, Audi Sport now turns its attention to its next electric challenge.

16 August, 2021

Lucas di Grassi won the very first Formula E race in China back in 2014, so it was fitting he win again on the brand's final weekend in the formula

It was the end of an era for Audi over the weekend, as the brand’s factory presence in Formula E officially came to an end in Berlin. The final two races of the FIA Formula E Championship for 2020/21, also marked the last races for Audi in Formula E, having been involved in the formula since the very first race in China in 2014.

Back then at the first race in Beijing, it was Audi driver Lucas di Grassi who took the very first win in the formula. So it was fitting that di Grassi once again stood on the top step of the podium in brand’s final weekend in Formula E.

“It was a very emotional weekend,” said Lucas di Grassi who won the race on Saturday. “In seven years we have achieved an extreme amount with Audi Sport, ABT and Schaeffler. That this successful partnership is now coming to an end is a great pity.”

Indeed, having been involved in the all-electric formula since the beginning, Audi has also become the most successful brand in Formula E and Lucas di Grassi the most successful driver. With a total of 84 races, with 14 wins and 47 podium finishes, Audi has been at the ‘pointy end’ since the beginning. In the 2017/2018 season, the brand’s first as a full factory team, Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler iced the year by winning the teams’ title.

For Lucas di Grassi, that first win in Beijing in 2014 was just the first of many, the Brazilian going on to post 12 wins and 35 podiums during his time in Formula E as well as winning the drivers’ title in the 2016/17 season. He is one of only two drivers in the series to have competed since the beginning and the only one to have done so with the same team.

“Our biggest strength this year was definitely the efficiency of the drive train in the race,” said Allan McNish, Team Principal of Audi Sport ABT Schaeffler. “Lucas and René thrilled the fans with two wins, the one-two in Mexico and also comeback drives. This season was incredibly close with tough on track battles and our team can be extremely proud of what we have achieved together. It’s been a fantastic journey.”

But while the brand’s factory association with Formula E has come to an end, technology developed for the series is already integral to the brand’s next, and arguably toughest challenge yet as it prepares to tackle the Dakar Rally for the first time in January.

The purpose-designed and built Audi RS Q e-tron will carry the brand’s hopes into the desert in January when three highly skilled Audi driving teams tackle the gruelling off-road rally for the first time.

The 250kW motor-generator unit (MGU) from the Audi e-tron FE07, which was developed in-house by Audi Sport is also used in the innovative drive for the RS Q e-tron, with one MGU on the front and one on the rear axle providing the electric quattro drive. Each of the MGUs weighs less than 35 kilograms and achieves an efficiency of 97 percent. A third MGU works in tandem with a highly efficient TFSI engine (developed for Audi’s DTM cars), to form an energy converter that recharges the high-voltage battery developed by Audi Sport. 

The combination is formidable, as are the driver pairings and the experience of competition at the very highest levels that Audi Sport brings to every new challenge.

So, while another chapter of Audi’s proud motorsport history comes to an end, an exciting new chapter is already being written with the countdown to Dakar already well and truly underway.

The combination is formidable, as are the driver pairings and the experience of competition at the very highest levels that Audi Sport brings to every new challenge