In the early days of motorsport, the steering wheel came from humble beginnings and had one primary function – that of directing a car through every twist and turn by navigating left and right.
Over time, however, it has evolved to be so much more, moving with the times and technology as countless buttons, toggles, and dials were introduced.
With a pioneering and revolutionary approach to racing, Formula E is no exception to this advancement, and over six seasons, the series has gained a reputation for being one of the most difficult out there.
Harnessing and taming a Formula E car is no easy achievement, and in order to do so, a driver must control the car through their fingertips, with the steering wheel managing every element of the vehicle.
Attack Mode: In Season 5, Formula E introduced Attack Mode – the strategic boost that provides a 35kW power increase when activated. Pressing this right-hand blue button arms the device that is activated when driving through the Attack Zone on track.
Torque Map: This blue and red dial controls the of the throttle map of the car and therefore, the sensitivity on the throttle when accelerating. This can be set up with the team over practice depending on a driver’s feeling.
Drive Mode: This right-hand orange button is a Formula E car’s equivalent to first gear. Pressing this allows a driver to pull away and start running.
Dashboard Control: These two white buttons control the on-screen display of the dashboard. Pressing the right-hand button moves a page forward while the left-hand moves a page back.
Reset Mode: If this pink button is pressed, then something isn’t quite right with the car. In the event of an alarm ringing, drivers will press this to reset the vehicle, clear the dashboard and resume racing.
Pit Limiter: This yellow button prevents a driver from speeding in the pit lane – a punishable offense in Formula E. Pressing this button matches the speed of the car to the speed of the pit lane to improving safety.
Start Mode: In Formula E, green means go and as such, it is only natural for this left-hand button to control the start procedure. Drivers press this when sitting on the grid, setting up the car to ensure the perfect getaway.
Team Radio: Pressing this blue left-hand button opens the team radio channel, allowing a driver to talk to their engineer.
Reverse: With a button that allows a driver to go forwards, of course, a Formula E car has a button that allows it to be driven backwards. Holding this orange button for one second allows a driver to engage the reverse gear.
FanBoost: Pressing this turquoise button activates FanBoost which gives drivers a 100kW power boost for five seconds. Not every driver receives FanBoost so get voting!
Energy and Regen: This red toggle switch controls the intensity of a driver’s energy consumption and regeneration under braking. Controlling this correctly is key to executing the perfect race.
Central Dials: Top secret. We’d love to explain what these three dials do but we’d rather maintain our competitive edge.