PARIS — Promoters of the fledgling electric car Formula E motor racing competition on Wednesday unveiled China Racing as the second team to sign up for next year's inaugural world championship.
The Chinese outfit joins British team Drayson Racing for the new format starting in 2014 that will feature cars powered solely by electricity.
"Chinese cities have high level of pollution and electric cars could help them to challenge this issue," said Alejandro Agag, chief executive officer of the Formula E Holdings company that will oversee the commercial rights of the series. "The success of the competition in China could help the people to change their mind about electric cars."
China Racing director Steven Lu acknowledged that part of his goal, through exposure to the Formula E championship, was to promote electric vehicles in his homeland in the hope of achieving a 15% to 20% usage rate by 2030.
The competition, touted as an environmentally friendly alternative to Formula One, will feature 10 races staged on urban circuits in iconic cities with the full 2014 calendar set to be unveiled March 8.
Agag also confirmed that a Chinese city, possibly Shanghai or Beijing, would host a race.
"There will be two (host) cities in Asia, including one in China, two in South America, two in North America and two in Europe (one of which will be Rome)," said Agag.
Two other venues would be added to the calendar in September, he added.
As part of the announcement at the International Automobile Federation (FIA) headquarters in central Paris, FEH said it also wanted to stage a race in the French capital.
"There are several cities which are enquiring and others that we must convince," Agag added, saying that Paris fell into the second category and as a result would not be on the March 8 list.
The championship also has the full support of the FIA.
"Times are changing and Formula E is a symbol of our vision for the future as well as a mean to improve safety," said FIA president Jean Todt.
The series will ultimately consist of 10 teams, the other eight are expected to be revealed by the end of the year with 20 drivers at the controls of cars capable of reaching speeds of up to 250 kilometers (155 miles) per hour.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2013