Nissan Formula E has announced Norman Nato and Sacha Fenestraz for its all-new driver lineup ahead of Season 9 of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship, the first campaign of the Gen3 era.
Nato, a Formula E race winner, makes his full-time return to the series with the Japanese manufacturer having competed in the FIA World Endurance Championship in 2022. The 30-year-old Frenchman had a stellar junior career, winning races in Formula Renault 3.5 Series, GP2 Series and FIA Formula 2, while also taking an overall second place at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2020.
For Fenestraz, next season will mark his first full-time campaign in Formula E, following his debut at the final round of Season 8. The French-Argentine racer won the Japanese Formula 3 title in 2019 and continues to compete in the country in both Super Formula and the GT500 class of the Super GT championship. So far in 2022, the 23-year-old has taken victory in both championships and currently tops the Super GT standings.
Reacting, Tommaso Volpe, general manager, Nissan Formula E, and managing director, Nissan Formula E Team, described the latest move as a significant moment for the team, as the it commences the Gen3 era.
According to him, Season 9 will be the team’s first season competing as one team, following Nissan’s acquisition of e.dams earlier this year, and also the beginning of our partnership with McLaren Racing.
“This marks a new era for the Nissan Formula E Team,” he pointed out, adding, “and we believe that a combination of experience and the opportunity to nurture new talent is the right balance for us right now. In Norman and Sacha, we have found two strong drivers to fulfil our vision.
“Norman has proven to be a very talented driver in Formula E and in other series, and he brings a wealth of experience and skills to the team. As for Sacha, we have monitored his progress and performance over the past few years and have been very impressed. We believe he has great potential and that this is the right time to bring him into to the team. I am convinced that they will complement each other and the team very well. I can’t wait to see them both in action on track in our new Nissan Gen3 car.
“At the same time, I’d like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to Sébastien Buemi and Maximilian Günther for all their hard work, commitment and dedication during the last season, which has been a challenging yet a crucial one for us. Séb in particular has played a big role in the history of our team, after having been with e.dams for eight seasons, four of which with Nissan. We have grown and evolved with him over the years; his tremendous achievements, perseverance and enthusiasm will always be a part of who we are. To have had both Séb and Max as part of our team makes us very proud. We wish them every success in their careers, all the best in their new endeavours, and remain open to future collaborations.”
Season 9 (2022/23) will be Nissan’s fifth in Formula E and marks the start of the Gen3 era. With 350 kilowatts (40% more power than in Gen2) and a top speed over 320 km/h, the new cars will be lighter and smaller, enabling faster, more agile wheel-to-wheel all-electric racing.
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