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      08-19-2014, 10:33 AM   #1
954Stealth
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FIA testing BMW i8 as official Formula E safety vehicles

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"The all-electric FIA Formula E Championship has today confirmed that its course cars for the inaugural season will be fitted with Qualcomm Halo™ wireless charging technology."

With the final specification of car set to be announced shortly, the championship’s technical team took advantage of today’s final test at Donington Park to trial two BMW i8 and two BMW i3 models with the aim to evaluate them for the series’ official course cars. Earlier this year, the German marque was part of the Global Launch event of the Formula E in London.

All four BMWs have been specifically modified to meet FIA requirements, with one of the BMW i3 models featuring an inductive charging system from Qualcomm Incorporated (NASDAQ: QCOM), with the remaining three vehicles set to be adapted at a later stage. The technology has been developed by San Diego-based Qualcomm Incorporated, one of the official Founding and Technology Partners of the series and a global leader in 3G, 4G and next-generation wireless technologies. The Qualcomm Halo™ technology uses resonant magnetic induction to transfer energy between a ground-based pad and a charging pad fitted to the underside of the vehicle. The cars can then simply park over the base pad for charging to start automatically.

The chosen safety car – which will be officially entitled the Qualcomm Safety Car - will be driven by experienced driver Bruno Correia, whilst the medical and extraction cars will be overseen by FIA Medical Delegate Dr Phil Rayner and his team. The cars will be positioned at the end of the pitlane, charging wirelessly and ready to be rapidly deployed as required during each practice, qualifying and race.

Steve Pazol, GM, Wireless Charging at Qualcomm Incorporated, said: “Qualcomm is honoured to be an integral part of FIA’s Formula E Championship. As electric vehicles become more ubiquitous, charging them wirelessly is an obvious next step in the EV evolution and we are excited to showcase this in Formula E. Motorsport is a known proving ground for new technologies, and in addition to our wireless EV charging technology, Qualcomm will be bringing more of its technologies to bear as the series goes forward.”

Alejandro Agag, CEO of Formula E, said: “Qualcomm’s wireless charging system is ground-breaking technology and represents an exciting evolution for charging electric vehicles. Wireless charging has the potential to radically improve the electric vehicle driver experience and Formula E provides the perfect platform in which to develop, test and showcase this exciting new technology.”

source: FIA


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      08-19-2014, 10:45 AM   #2
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Nice!!!

That i8 is looking "the business" and the dihedral doors make for a great overhead shot... It does appear that the i8 may be the pace car after all. Can't wait for more info on these cars, and for the first race next month.

Thanks for posting, man!

http://www.carthrottle.com/heres-you...i8-safety-car/
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      08-19-2014, 10:49 AM   #3
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Another article, different livery (obviously from before this latest test)

http://www.formula-future.net/motors...-e-safety-car/
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      08-19-2014, 10:57 AM   #4
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What boggles my mind though is that BMW is quietly sponsoring and supporting Formula E, yet they are not apparently promoting this very much. They are a major sponsor. There should be crapload of content on BMW.com and social media sites as this is, I feel, a pretty awesome thing to be doing.

I've always loved the BMW M Safety Cars in MotoGP and BMW always promotes them with photoshoots and press releases. Hoping they will do the same for the i3 & i8 Formula E cars.
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      08-19-2014, 11:01 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ddk632 View Post
Nice!!!

That i8 is looking "the business" and the dihedral doors make for a great overhead shot... It does appear that the i8 may be the pace car after all. Can't wait for more info on these cars, and for the first race next month.

Thanks for posting, man!

http://www.carthrottle.com/heres-you...i8-safety-car/
The silver car you put up looks nice but the white is definitely sexy!
I like it a lot; I'm truly hoping this i8 in the white livery is the winner
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      08-19-2014, 11:02 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 954Stealth View Post
The silver car you put up looks nice but the white is definitely sexy!
I like it a lot; I'm truly hoping this i8 in the white livery is the winner
Agreed, the white is where it's at.

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      08-19-2014, 11:03 AM   #7
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This means I'll inadvertently own two Formula safety cars. Makes me more excited to watch Formula E, for sure.
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      08-19-2014, 11:05 AM   #8
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I think it's offical now, guys. i8 is the safety car.

There it is, the FIAformulaE safety car. #FETest pic.twitter.com/ndI1ONHUnv

— Marc Priestley (f1elvis) August 19, 2014


(from your link above)

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      08-19-2014, 11:08 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carac View Post
This means I'll inadvertently own two Formula safety cars. Makes me more excited to watch Formula E, for sure.
Nice! So you're getting an i3 also, very cool.

Btw Formula E will be racing in Long Beach, CA and also Miami, FL next year. I am not sure about Long Beach but I will definitely be attending the Miami event since I live down here.

Hopefully BMW will have some of their famous private events like they did at Art Basel and show off the cars.

Will bring out the DSLR gear and make sure to get lots of photos of these beauties.

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      08-19-2014, 11:08 AM   #10
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The medical car ready to drive on to a charging mat

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      08-19-2014, 11:11 AM   #11
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Safety car more angles


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      08-19-2014, 11:17 AM   #12
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      08-19-2014, 11:21 AM   #13
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This thread should be front page news on Bimmerpost...
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      08-19-2014, 04:58 PM   #14
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Wireless charging on the i8?!? Wow, I wonder if this is something BMW are going to make available on customer cars.
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      08-19-2014, 05:10 PM   #15
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Nice! So you're getting an i3 also, very cool.


And before the SLS it was a CLK63 Black Series. For someone who puts so little emphasis on "safety" when buying a car, I have a funny way of ending up with safety cars.
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      08-20-2014, 09:51 AM   #16
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Wireless charging on the i8?!? Wow, I wonder if this is something BMW are going to make available on customer cars.
Doubtless it is slow, inefficient and adds weight. So I doubt it. I would not want it for those reasons anyway.

Sounds like a 100% gimmick on that Safety car to be honest.

Can't see the need. Car could be charged overnight and waiting by the track. It's not like it is going to get a flat battery waiting until it is required.
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      08-20-2014, 10:48 AM   #17
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I think the main benefit of the wireless charging is it stays charged in between use, and in an emergency response, the personnel just get in and go ... no need to unplug a cable.
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      08-20-2014, 12:28 PM   #18
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How well does wireless charging work? Will there be wireless chargers in parking lots someday, that automatically bill for their services?
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      08-20-2014, 12:35 PM   #19
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I think they will not be automatic but based on an app. In Miami already and likely many major cities, you can park and pay with an app on your phone.

The technology already exists for you to pay via your app and the charger would be turned on once payment is posted, for either a set amount of time, or set amount of energy, for example.

I don't see this being mainstream anytime soon, though.

Remember, Formula E is all about pushing the technologies of electric vehicles forward. So wireless charging, while seemingly gimmicky, is perfect for this platform.

As the tech improves, it will have faster charge times, less loss of energy during charging, more security, and more mainstream applications.

I can see this being an interesting aftermarket opportunity for a decade or even longer until such a thing becomes mainstream and cars start to come that way from the factory.

The beauty of it is that there can be multiple standards adopted and implemented in wireless charging tech, where you're not limited by the type of cable/connection that the manufacturer chose to use.

Kind of like multiple bands of cellular technology in one phone that are possible today. Same idea.

I hate cables
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      08-20-2014, 12:41 PM   #20
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Quote:
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I think the main benefit of the wireless charging is it stays charged in between use, and in an emergency response, the personnel just get in and go ... no need to unplug a cable.
That's their claim, yes, but I am saying it is not needed. Why do they need to sit there with the car plugged in anyway during the race? Makes no sense, other than as a marketing gimmick.

Induction charging makes sense for electric buses, not here IMHO.
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      08-20-2014, 12:46 PM   #21
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Of course it's there to show off Qualcomm's wireless charging tech.

The practice, qualifying, and race are all in one day for Formula E, which is pretty much the entire day; the cars may be used many times throughout the day, and a full charge means full power.

I have no basis other than my own opinion, but I can see an i3 running low on charge by the end of the day if not plugged in at all, as it makes many trips around the track (city streets in Formula E) back and forth, etc.

It would be interesting to see how many miles it gets driven and what the charge would be like at the end of the day after use in the AM, practice, qualifying, race, in between, etc...
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      08-20-2014, 12:51 PM   #22
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As sophisticated as the i8 is, we are still in the early stages of the electric car game. What I suspect is light hybrid with a petrol motor will become the dominant drive train in North America as a result of the 55 mpg fuel efficiency rule. By light hybrid I mean just enough battery storage to capture braking energy. With the other tricks available now like stop start, turbocharging and direct injection, I think it is possible to get there.

The breakthrough everyone is looking for is increased energy density in batteries, especially without expensive rare earths. There is a huge amount of research going on, but no product yet.
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