Formula E is no short term 'fad', insists Porsche

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Porsche says that it is confident that Formula E is here to stay and is no passing flash-in-the-pan.

The French automotive manufacturer announced last month that it was pulling out of the FIA World Endurance Championship LMP1 class in favour of setting up a new Formula E team in 2019.

The news came on the same day that Mercedes said it was ditching DTM in order to enter the all-electric championship. Renault and Jaguar already compete as manufacturers in the series.

Porsche's Michael Steiner, a member of the executive board research and development, has insisted the decision isn't about being 'trendy'.

“We would not make such a wide-ranging strategic change for an event that only had marketing potential," Steiner said.

"If Formula E were just a short-term trend or a passing fad, we would certainly not become involved.

"We have seen the roadmap on the technical side," he added. "The regulations will start to open up and the planned developments are very interesting."

Steiner explained that the current interest in Formula E reflected the general direction of the motorsport industry.

He said that Formula E providing a perfect testing ground for the next generation of motor vehicles.

“The series is developing in an interesting direction," Steiner continued.

"Think, for example, of the rear axle with the electric motor," he elaborated. "Manufacturers are able to design themselves within the regulations, or take the inverter and the battery management, where there will also be more freedom.

“In the relatively short term, it is expected that a better battery will be used in Formula E, which will eliminate vehicle changes during the race.

"There are also planned increases in drive performance. And brake-by-wire is coming, along with other things."

Formula 1's new chief executive officer has said he's not worried by the rapid rise in popularity of Formula E.

And Red Bull's Christian Horner has said that Formula 1 shouldn't look to copy the direction of the all-electric competition.

"If you believe the politics, we'll all be driving electric cars in 2030," said Horner earlier this month. "Formula 1 should be the counterpoint: pure racing, man and machine.

"A competition of the best drivers in the world with combustion engines."

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