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Electric Cars Set for First Grand Prix

Electric cars have rounded a corner in their drive to enter the mainstream. Soon, you're going to be able to watch them race at high speeds.

The world's first fully electric Grand Prix racing series, the FIA Formula E Championship, launches this year. It will pit single-seat electric-powered racers against one another on ten center-city street courses from Beijing to Los Angeles and Miami, from Rio de Janeiro to Monte Carlo and Berlin. (See related blog post: "How Does Electric Stack Up to Gasoline on the Race Track?")

The first public demonstration of the car that all ten teams will use, the Spark-Renault SRT_01E, is set for Monday at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. A former F1 driver, Brazilian Lucas de Grassi, the official test driver for the Formula E, will be behind the wheel of the vehicle, which was built by Spark Racing Technology together with a consortium of some of the leading motorsports manufacturers, including Dallara, McLaren, Renault, Williams, and Michelin.

Continue reading at National Geographic . . .