NIO completed its first development test for the next ABB FIA Formula E Championship season at Mallory Park on Tuesday.
The mileage was accrued at the Leicestershire circuit with the Anglo-Chinese team’s development car, the final version of which will run in the 2019-20 Formula E season.
It spent the majority of the day putting the first miles on the new hardware ahead of more extensive pre-homologation testing which it will carry out in Spain next month.
“As planned, we commenced our manufacturer testing program with the Season Six development chassis,” team principal Gerry Hughes told e-racing365.
“While this is effectively a glorified shakedown event, we have accrued valuable mileage with the new car.”
E-racing365 understands that the team used one of its simulator drivers for the running during Monday’s test.
Hughes confirmed that further testing of the new car will take place later this week when race driver Tom Dillmann takes over in the cockpit.
“We will continue to explore the performance envelope of the new chassis before shipping it off to Europe where the majority of our summer testing program will be conducted,” explained Hughes.
“This is always an exciting time of the year for the manufacturer teams competing in Formula E and running the S6 development chassis allows us to focus on the medium to long-term engineering projects, alongside the final three races of the year.”
NIO revealed to e-racing365 in March that it would be one of the last manufacturers to track test its 2019-20 powertrain configuration.
“We have a slightly different philosophy to other teams because typically there is always something that changes in the rules, so we prefer to use the maximum time at the end before we go to homologation,” performance program engineering director Paul Fickers told e-racing365.
NIO is using a single motor design this season for the first time since Season One. For the second, third and fourth seasons the team ran a twin-motor system with mixed results.
All but one of next season’s manufacturers have conducted at least one day of testing so far with only GEOX Dragon having yet to hit the track.
The American team, which runs under the Penske manufacturer name, is currently scheduled to run next month.