Nico Rosberg believes Formula One will have to “become electric” in the future to comply with government regulations aimed at combating climate change.
As the world grows more aware of the effects of burning fossil fuels on climate change, attention has shifted to Formula One and its efforts to reduce its carbon footprint.
Sebastian Vettel has been the most outspoken of the drivers, most recently donning a T-shirt warning that if the current course is continued, the Miami Grand Prix will be underwater, while others have begun to consider methods for the sport to become more sustainable.
The sport currently uses a synthetic fuel and has said it wants to be net carbon zero by 2030, but the sport’s chiefs are now being warned that may not be enough to pass various government regulations.
The co-founder and chairman of Formula E, Alejandro Agag, has said he wants to be part of F1’s strategy to turn to electricity as an alternative fuel. He has even predicted electric cars to be quicker than F1 cars in the near future.
“By developing battery technology in electric cars, we will go faster one day,” said Agag, as reported by The Race.
“We could go faster today – the only thing is we would have no energy in the battery. But in terms of propulsion, we could put four motors, one on each wheel, and go faster than Formula 1 for 10 minutes.
“But this will come. The amount of energy the battery can store will arrive, the battery will be lighter. This is how I see it.”
Rosberg, the 2016 Formula One World Champion and owner of the Extreme E team, is an advocate for electric vehicles. The German agreed with Agag and predicted that F1 will eventually have to go electric.
“I see they F1 are going with synthetic fuels, which for mobility as such is not going to be the best solution,” said Rosberg.
“But synthetic fuels are very relevant for other mobility sectors, might it be aeroplanes or container ships or trucks or whatever.
“So Formula 1 is going to go down that route and will play a key role in developing these e-fuels.
“Hopefully, as a result, that will benefit all these other mobility sectors. But is that enough for F1 to be relevant with e-fuels as the only mobility thing to be using e-fuels? Well, that’s a bit of a question mark for the long term. Maybe, as Alejandro says, they will have to go electric.”