Formula E

Formula E: What do the colors of the LED strips on the Gen3 car mean?

Tobias Bluhm

Tobias Bluhm

From 2023, Formula E will be using the standardized "Gen3" bodywork. The cars have a futuristic appearance - thanks in part to a number of LED strips that are attached to the rear as well as the cockpit area of all vehicles. In the past, the series used different colors to denote the different performance modes of the cars. But what do the colors stand for on the new Gen3 car? The answer is sobering.

The LED strips adorn the Gen3 car in several places: Directed respectively to the front and rear, they shine on the rear fins of the bolides. In addition, there are individual stripes on the roll bar, the central pillar of the halo head protection, and the diffuser.

The rear-facing LED chains serve a dual function on the Gen3 cars: on the one hand, they are intended to improve the cars' aesthetics. On the other hand, they can increase the effect of the obligatory rain light in difficult visibility conditions. This is centered above the diffuser and, according to the rules, must be switched on when the race director declares the track to be "wet." The rain light glows red in all cases.

LED strip "of no technical significance"

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All other LEDs, however, have "no technical significance - apart from making the cars stand out better," Formula E said in response to multiple requests from 'e-Formel.de'. "During the tests in Valencia, we also tried purple and white stripes. But the standard should always be blue by now."

In reverse, this also means that fans will no longer be able to tell whether a driver is running in the standard setting (300 kW) or in attack mode (350 kW) without the support of TV inserts. This was still possible in the Gen2 era. Back then, the top of the halo bar lit up blue in Attack mode and flashed magenta when FANBOOST was activated. Spectator-friendly, therefore, the new arrangement is not.

The new LED strips should come into their own particularly well at this weekend's night race in Diriyya. The first E-Prix in Saudi Arabia starts on Friday evening at 18:00 German time. ProSieben will broadcast the race on free TV, while e-Formel.de will accompany the race with a liveticker.

additional coverage by Timo Pape

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