But Formula E cars have evolved over the years. Gone are the days of a slightly standard-looking single-seater racing car, or the need to change cars halfway through a race because they couldn’t make the whole 40 minutes on one charge. Modern Formula E cars look like little batmobiles and they are pretty impressive to see in the flesh.
So when Nick Heidfeld returned with the Mahindra Formula E team for another shot at the shootout (sadly for him on the same weekend he watched Romain Dumas demolish his long-standing outright Hill record), and became the first Gen-2 Formula E car to appear at the Festival, we had to stick a camera on it (or two).
Here is the full run, and what you will notice is not that the top speed is particularly impressive, but just how fast it gets off the line and just squirrelly these things are in the corners. In case you didn’t know Formula E cars run on road-derived tyres, so they don’t have the full-slick massive mechanical grip of Formula 1 cars. That, added to the colossal torque that an electric motor puts out instantly, makes it a bit of a handful. But if there’s anyone who can handle a car on the Goodwood Hill, it’s the man who still holds the shootout record.