Formula E

Exclusive: Formula E introduces new rear-view mirrors for Gen3 car already at Sao Paulo E-Prix

Timo Pape

Timo Pape

The Gen3 car in Formula E is getting new rearview mirrors. After numerous drivers had complained in recent weeks about the poor visibility to the rear and criticized the limited safety, the FIA reacted. As 'e-Formel.de' can exclusively report, the new mirrors will now already be introduced at the Sao Paulo E-Prix in March.

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Many drivers should breathe a sigh of relief: for the "double header" of Formula E in Berlin on April 22/23, 2023, all Gen3 cars should be given new rear-view mirrors that ensure a better view to the rear. This was confirmed by the FIA a few days ago at the request of 'e-Formel.de'. However, the automobile world federation subsequently succeeded in further accelerating the process: As 'e-Formel.de' has learned, the new rear-view mirrors are ready for use earlier than expected and are likely to be used for the first time at the race in Sao Paulo on March 25.

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At the same time, the Automobile World Federation communicated publicly for the first time that it had been working on the rear-view mirror issue for several weeks. "Various tests were carried out in Hyderabad," a federation spokesman tells us. "One of the configurations was found to be good and will be introduced from Berlin."

The FIA is responding to criticism from numerous drivers, some of whom experienced scare moments at past E-Prixes because of the rearview mirrors being set too low. For example, Sergio Sette Camara, who, according to his own statement, did not see the approaching Pascal Wehrlein in qualifying at Diriyya. Wehrlein just barely shot past the Nio 333, but was unable to start his fast lap as planned.

Vergne fired up discussion again in Cape Town

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At the Cape Town E-Prix a week ago, rear-view mirrors were again a contentious issue. Jean-Eric Vergne had defended himself as the leader against Antonio Felix da Costa until the penultimate lap of the race. The Portuguese finally set off on a surprising as well as outstanding attack - apparently out of Vergne's "blind spot."

"It was a very good maneuver - I'm just a bit frustrated," the Frenchman told the TV World Signal after the race. "I don't know how many races we've been complaining about these rearview mirrors. You just can't see anything, it's really dangerous. I literally didn't see him coming. He brilliantly used that to his advantage. It was close."

After the race, Vergne followed up on Twitter: he illustrated his statement "my rearview mirrors for the next race" with a funny-meaning motorcycle with nearly 30 rearview mirrors.

It remains to be said that Formula E is addressing the critical issues on the Gen3 car. That goes for the emergency braking system, which was finally introduced at the Diriyya E-Prix, as well as the rearview mirrors. There is certainly room for improvement, however, in terms of development and deployment time, as both issues had been simmering long before a response from Formula E and the FIA.

additional reporting by Tobias Wirtz

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