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Shell debuts e-transmission fluid at Formula E championship

Shell debuts e-transmission fluid at Formula E championship
Photo courtesy of Nissan e.dams

Shell launched a bespoke e-transmission fluid for the Nissan e.dams Formula E team at the Monaco round of the ABB Formula E World Championship last weekend, where the team came in sixth with eight points.

The bespoke transmission fluid has been designed and tested in collaboration with the race team for their new powertrain that debuted at the race on May 7. Shell and Nissan e.dams began their journey together in November 2018.

“In Nissan, Shell has united with a global pioneer in the development of electric mobility solutions, who share the same desire to deliver technological innovations from the racetrack to the road,” said Selda Gunsel, Shell VP Lubricants Technology. “As we transition to a lower-carbon future, we both see Formula E as a rich territory for the innovation of e-mobility technologies that all EV drivers can benefit from, including our Shell E-Fluids range that is designed to protect passenger EVs against electric motor corrosion, improve range through increased transmission efficiency, and enhance the charging process via efficient thermal management.”

Transmission efficiency is of the utmost importance in the energy-limited series. With motor and inverter efficiency in the high 90% bracket, the transmission is an area where teams can still gain a useful advantage. This fact is highlighted by the move from multispeed transmissions to single- or twin-speed units, with the associated reduction in both mass and parasitic losses. 

The purpose of Shell’s involvement in motorsport is to leverage the racetrack as a test bed for its innovations and technologies. The e-transmission fluid has been specifically designed and developed to work within Nissan’s new powertrain featuring upgraded hardware and software, with the overall aim to improve the performance of the Nissan e.dams Gen2 Formula E race car. 

The new-for-season-seven Nissan powertrain, which raced for the first time in Monaco, is the team’s second all-new Gen2 powertrain.  The more powerful Gen2 Formula E race cars first took to the track in season five of the championship and feature high performance 250-kilowatt batteries and motors. The Nissan e.dams race car can sprint to 100 kph in just 2.8 secs and has a top speed of 280 kph. 

“Shell is a key partner for our Formula E race team, as we race into the third season of our partnership, we continue to rely on them to innovate with us as we strive together to improve our competitiveness at every race. It is crucial that we maximise the performance and longevity of our new Formula E Gen2 powertrain through efficient lubrication and cooling, and Shell’s bespoke E-Fluids are designed specifically for the extremes of racing. Of course, for Nissan as a global pioneer in EV production, we seek the same high-performance lubrication, cooling and longevity for our electric road car powertrains,” said Tommaso Volpe, Nissan’s global motorsport director. 

“Formula E is a sport that thrives on innovation and technical advancement, and as a team we are constantly looking ahead, searching for yet more speed and efficiency, with the wealth of motorsports experience and racing heritage that we see across the Formula E grid today, the competition in the sport is tougher than ever. Every team here is pushing hard for performance, so we rely on Shell’s E-Fluids expertise,” said Gregory Driot, Nissan e.dams co-team principal.