Under the new stewardship of Shanghai Lisheng Racing, the renamed NIO 333 Formula E Team unveils its 2019/20 season livery and driver line-up at Valencia Ricardo Tormo Circuit today. The car has been the updated both in performance and livery. NIO continues as tittle sponsor but the flashes of Chinese red are telling. The driver line up continues with Britain's Oliver Turvey but introduces new Chinese driver Ma Qing Hua. There are also management changes to the team's backroom staff.
Vincent Wang, the new CEO of NIO 333 FE Team said, "It’s our greatest pleasure to collaborate with NIO and participate in Formula E. NIO has achieved great results in the past, and the NIO 333 FE Team will thrive to live on that heritage. The championship is a great platform for Chinese motorsports to enter the world stage, and we are very happy to be here. We are ready to both join the FE family and to take on the challenges, and we hope that the team will continue to make progress with our efforts. We are also looking forward to see the moment the red lights go out."
The opener of the 2019/20 ABB FIA Formula E Championship is in Ad-Diriyah, Saudi Arabia on November 22. For the coming season, there will be 14 races held in 12 cities around the world, including Sanya, China. Hong Kong lost its billing, most likely due to civil unrest. New circuits will include Jakarta and Seoul. The double-header season finale will be in London.
The NIO FE Team has participated in the FIA Formula E since the inaugural season and won the driver's championship title in the 2014/15 season, with Brazilian driver Nelson Piquet Jr.
British driver Oliver Turvey joined the team in June 2015, and has participated in all races for the team so far. He will continue to race for the NIO 333 FE Team in the 2019/20 season. Ma Qing Hua is the only Chinese driver with Formula E experience. He has served as a reserve driver for the NIO FE Team, and has been promoted to the official driver for the 2019/20 season, racing for the NIO 333 FE Team together with Oliver.
Ma Qing Hua, born in Shanghai, China on December 25th, 1987, won two races in the 2014 WTCC (World Touring Car Championship) and became the first Chinese driver to stand on the top step of the podium in the FIA World Championship event.
Ma Qing Hua appeared in the first practice of the 2012 F1 Italian Grand Prix, and became the first Chinese driver to drive an F1 car at a Grand Prix weekend. At his home race, the 2013 F1 Chinese Grand Prix, Ma Qing Hua also participated in the first practice session. He won the China Touring Car Championship 1600cc class title in 2011, and took victory in the 2019 WTCR (World Touring Car Cup) Slovakia Race 3.
In the 2015 - 2016 FIA Formula E season, Ma Qing Hua joined the Aguri Team to complete four races. In the following season, the Aguri Team was renamed DS Techeetah, and he continued to stay in the team for three additional races. In the 2017 - 2018 and 2018 - 2019 seasons, Ma Qing Hua served as a reserve driver for the NIO Formula E team, prior to signing up with the new NIO 333 FE Team as the official driver. He will partner with Oliver Turvey for the 2019/20 season.
333 Racing partnered with NIO Formula E Team in September 2019, and was renamed NIO 333 Formula E Team. The new team is fully managed and operated by the professional motorsport management company in China, Lisheng Racing, while its European team is responsible for R&D and technical support. NIO will remain as the title sponsor of the team. With these changes, the team will also embrace more Chinese elements.
NIO Inc. is a pioneer in China’s premium electric vehicle market. Founded in November 2014, NIO’s mission is to shape a joyful lifestyle by offering premium smart electric vehicles and being the best user enterprise. NIO designs, jointly manufactures, and sells smart and connected premium electric vehicles, driving innovations in next generation technologies in connectivity, autonomous driving and artificial intelligence. NIO began deliveries of the ES8, a 7-seater high-performance premium electric SUV in China in June 2018, and its variant, the 6-seater ES8, in March 2019. NIO officially launched the ES6, a 5-seater high-performance premium electric SUV, in December 2018 and began the first deliveries of the ES6 in June 2019.