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Volvo eyes Formula E, not F1

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Volvo eyes Formula E, not F1
By:
Jan 19, 2015, 5:35 AM

Volvo has set its long-term sights on a global open-wheel championship - and it isn't F1.

Michelin Formula E
Robert Dahlgren, Polestar Racing Volvo S60
Scott McLaughlin, Polestar Racing Volvo S60
Scott McLaughlin, Polestar Racing Volvo S60
Bruno Senna, Mahindra Racing Formula E Team Oriol Servia, Dragon Racing Formula E Team Nelson Piquet Jr., China Racing Formula E Team
Formula E signage

The Swedish carmaker already races in Scandinavian Touring Cars and Australian V8 Supercars, although chief Alain Visser recently hinted that Volvo is rethinking its commitment to motorsport.

"Look at Land Rover and Jaguar," he told the Swedish edition of Auto Motor und Sport. "Full premium brands that do not race.

"I still do not see that racing suits our DNA, as Volvo should convey safety and low consumption."

However, the direction in recent times of top racing series like Formula One and Le Mans is very much towards safety and low fuel consumption.

"Yes," Visser acknowledged, "but that's completely different money.

"I would say that Le Mans is the absolutely dumbest racing class you could be in. It costs 20 million euros for one car and you get press coverage for 24 hours!"

Volvo yet to take a decision

As for the FIA's new all-electric single seater category Formula E, however, Visser admitted Volvo is interested.

Manufacturers have been invited to develop alternate powertrains for season two of the series, and although motorsport.com believes that Volvo is not one of those who are going to join for the 2015/16 season, it is in the mix for future years.

"We have looked at this," he said. "There is no decision, but it's definitely something we are thinking about.

"The audience figures and press coverage is still quite limited but this is a motor racing concept that I absolutely believe can grow.

"We follow the series very carefully and have done some deep analysis but are yet to take a decision. When you have a limited budget to spend, one must consider carefully where you invest that money.

"In comparison to other motorsports, Formula E is much better value for money," added Visser.

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About this article

Series Formula E
Author GMM