The Formula E preseason tests, held at the Ricardo Tormo Circuit in Valencia, left interesting things to analyze ahead of the debut of the Gen3 era on January 14, 2023.
Maserati, with Maximilian Gunther, offered an exhibition and showed that its entry into the electric single-seater series will not be a mere sidekick, but will fight to be at the top of the standings.
On the other hand, Nissan, which unveiled a new image, shone with the performance of Norman Nato on the last day of the test.
The Frenchman took first place during the fifth test session at the Valencian track. In his first official participation in Formula E after his return to the series after a year away, he managed a lap of 1m25.776s, which was enough to beat the next best driver Oliver Rowland in the Mahindra by one tenth of a second.
The Nissan driver expressed his satisfaction at returning in good form to the street circuits of Formula E. “It’s good to be with everyone seeing some friends, old mechanics as well that I’ve worked with.”
“In private testing, you’re basically on your own, fighting lap times and finding new improvements, but you don’t really know where you are compared to everyone else,” Nato explained.
He stressed the importance of setting times and basically trying to improve and see what are the weaknesses and areas for improvement heading into the start of the ninth season.
“We are making progress. It is good to finish with data like those achieved in Valencia, which is quite positive,” he said.
Sebastien Buemi, Envision Racing’s new signing, clocked a time of 1m26.066s to place third with Edo Mortara continuing Maserati MSG Racing’s good run, achieving the fourth fastest time of the one-hour session.
Reigning champion Stoffel Vandoorne (DS PENSKE) appeared to have shortened the benchmark time at the end, only for his final run to be eliminated for exceeding track limits.
Maximilian Guenther‘s streak of three times at the top of the table came to an end: the German found himself in 19th place this time already a couple of seconds off the final pace.
The closing of these tests marks the last opportunity for drivers and teams to evaluate their Gen3 cars on track.