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Formula E’s BMW i8 safety car has a new livery

Asymmetric paint scheme aims to make the 2+2 i8 look like a single-seater. Erm

The fourth race of a season seems an odd time to re-livery a racing series’ safety car. But hey, Formula E has done just that, so let’s investigate.

The new BMW i8 safety car will be seen in action first at the Mexican round of the FE championship. BMW says the look, created by BMW motorsport design Michael Scully, “was developed in close collaboration between Formula E and the BMW Motorsport design team, and reflects the iconic design language of the BMW iFE.18.”

Is any Formula E car iconic yet? Or its livery, for that matter? We’d argue not.

Anyway, BMW disagrees. It says there’s logic at play here. BMW says “the aesthetic of the BMW i8 Coupe is inspired by the urban context of Formula E, in which spectators typically see the cars from positions that are higher and closer to the track than at other circuits”.

Scully explains that, just like the actual FE racecar, the first priority when designing the safety car was its top view. Apparently, “no two views of the are car the same. The asymmetric layout also shares the functionally-derived non-reflective matte black cockpit element seen on the BMW iFE.18.” Quite.

The i8’s “connective graphic network of blue and purple ‘veins’” are supposed to evoke the colours of electricity, BMW insists.

We’re more interested in the wider tyres, stiffened suspension, huge rear wing and M4 GTS bucket seats, but the chances of a BMW i8 M fitted with such goodies are painfully slim.

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