Yesterday, Mahindra launched the M7Electro and announced that Alex Lynn would be completing their driver lineup with Alexander Sims.
Lynn is no stranger to Mahindra after completing the Berlin finale races for the team in August following Pascal Wehrlein departure from the Indian team during the unexpected mid-season break. The British driver quickly got to terms with the car, just missing out on point in the first few races before bringing his M6Electro home in the top ten in the final three events of season 6.
Last season’s Mahindra call wasn’t the first time Lynn has impressed as a Formula E substitute driver. His first ever race was in New York during season 3 where he put his Virgin on pole which led to him completing the full season 4 for the team, while in season 5 the Brit got the call up from Jaguar when Nelson Piquet Jr left with half the year still to go.
“I’m incredibly excited to be back for Season 7 of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship and to be a part of Mahindra Racing,” said Lynn. “I’ve had the opportunity of driving the M7Electro on numerous test days and we’re all pretty proud of what we’ve come up with.
“We won’t know our competitiveness fully until the lights go out in Santiago, but we are here to consistently fight for wins and podiums; that’s what the team go racing for and so do I. From that side I’m extremely excited and focused to be delivering the results that this hard-working team deserves.”
After two seasons with BMW Andretti, Alexander Sims was announced to be switching to Mahindra less than a week after season 6 finished. The Brit took his first pole position and podium in the final race of his debut year before carrying that momentum through the summer break to take both poles and his first win in the Diriyah races last season. That also saw Sims set a Formula E record of most consecutive pole positions, a feat that was equalled by Antonio Felix da Costa in Marrakesh and the first two Berlin races on his way to securing the Drivers’ Championship.
In the months since his signing, Sims has been busy testing and getting to know his new team, and says that this week’s Valencia test will finally let them see how their new ZF powertrain compares to the rest of the grid.
“I’ve spent the last few months embedding myself into Mahindra Racing,” said Sims. “Getting to know everyone and learning how everyone works, which has been great. We’ve done a lot of simulator testing, which has been extremely helpful, but it’s the track testing that we’ve done that has been invaluable and has gone well.
“It’s difficult to draw performance comparisons, but what I have got a feeling of is the system and software, which is crucial, and ZF have done a good job on the hardware side with the powertrain. Until we get to Valencia testing and the races, we won’t know where we are competitive-wise, but the initial feelings seem good and we are working flat out to continue to fine-tune and optimise our package. I am so looking forward to seeing what it’s like to drive in the races and getting our teeth into the season.”
Mahindra Racing’s CEO and Team Principal, Dilbagh Gill, is confident that the team’s new car and drivers will see the team back fighting for podiums: “This is an incredibly exciting time for Mahindra Racing. We are heading into the championship’s (and the team’s!) seventh year in Formula E, and the first year ever as a World Championship series.
“Formula E has gone from strength to strength over this time and we are extremely proud to have been part of that journey from the very beginning. I am delighted to see the Mahindra Racing family grow this season with Maurice Lacroix and OMP joining the team, and I am looking forward to another season with the support of ZF Friedrichshafen AG, Shell and Voxdale.
“The team has been working incredibly hard to develop the M7Electro challenger and, with a strong driver pairing of Alexander Sims and Alex Lynn, I am confident that we will be back to securing podiums this season.”
Mahindra’s first podium winner, Nick Heidfeld, has been confirmed to continue in his role as special advisor as well as the team’s test and reserve driver. While the new M7Electro will continue Mahindra’s classic livery colours of red, white and blue, with the Indian flag appearing on the wheels and rear cover.