Formula E ‘safety car’ to be faster than racers

Formula E cars may be slower than their combustion-engined counterparts in Formula 1, but when it comes to safety cars there’s simply no competition.

Bernd Maylander’s trick Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG develops the best part of 600hp, but the Rimac Concept_One secured to oversee proceedings during the inaugural Formula E season boasts nearly double that.

The Croatian supercar – a machine yet to see any kind of production run – accelerates to 60mph in fewer than three seconds thanks to its four electric motors that develop a combined 1088hp. Yes, that’s one motor for each wheel, permitting all-wheel drive and torque-vectoring for freakish grip. Top speed is a theoretical 190mph.

“Racing has always been the driver of innovation. It is the reason for our very existence as Rimac Automobili was born as the result of my passion for racing and electronics,” says the company’s young founder, Mate Rimac.

“We believe that the Formula E series will be an incubator for thousands of innovations and technologies that will contribute to the adaptation of electric drivetrain technology in many applications.

It only makes sense that a car that is truly embracing the possibilities of the technology takes part in the series – the Concept_One shows already today what tomorrow’s technology can do. Our strong partnership with the Formula E series is a unique opportunity to push the limits even further.”

The Concept_One will be used to inspect the city circuits before races and, ironically, to slow the cars down in the event of yellow flags after an incident. It will do all of this without emitting any emissions whatsoever.

A lucky few will also have the chance to experience the world’s fastest electric car during passenger laps at Formula E events.