Nissan must not be “naïve” when it comes to its early Formula E expectations, says its Global Motorsport Director Michael Carcamo.
Nissan will make its Formula E debut for the 2018/19 season, picking up where its ally Renault has left off partnering the e.dams team, which has won three of the first four teams’ championships.
But entering as a new manufacturer alongside the introduction of the Gen2 car means Nissan is not expecting to immediately fight at the head of the field as the Renault e.dams partnership did.
“It certainly puts a lot of pressure on us, I’ll tell you that! Having the same alliance chairman doesn’t make it any easier for me, since I proposed the project in the first place but it’s good to have that reference,” Carcamo told Formula Spy.
“We know that the team is capable. The e.dams team is solid and that gives us a good base. I won’t be so naïve to think that just because we’re starting from that we should be at a high position though.
“It is an all new car, it’s going to be a new driver, it’s going to be a lot of new things, so there will be some unexpected twists and turns but I hope that our preparation is at least what’s going to put us on a proper footing come Riyadh. That’s my expectation.”
Carcamo outlined his goals for Nissan for its inaugural season, but did not indicate what performance level it would consider a success:
“I wouldn’t necessarily put a position on it. I think we need to know and have confidence that we’ve moved in the right direction, that we’ve made gains and are getting results as they come.
“You can have perfect preparation, you can still have bad luck in a race. So I think it’s having all those elements come together and we’ll take it one step at a time.”
Carcamo revealed that Nissan has been able to use Renault’s prior experience to aid its initial assault on the series:
“In general as an alliance, as a group, that’s one of our strengths. It would be silly for us not to tap into our own resources as a group when it comes to engineering, and that’s not different on the production side.
“Production platform vehicles are started as a group and then they’re tailored individually for each brand itself. So for us, we have our focus areas, but of course we will take the best of what’s available.”