Actor and environmental activist Leonardo DiCaprio entered in a joint venture with Venturi Automobiles to field the tenth team in the new FIA Formula E Championship.
FIA’s Formula E Championship, beginning in September 2014, is the world’s first fully-electric race series.
The new Venturi Grand Prix Formula E Team has been co-founded by DiCaprio and Gildo Pallanca Pastor, founder of pioneering EV manufacturer Venturi Automobiles, together with Bert Hedaya and Francesco Costa; the team will be based in Monaco,
“The future of our planet depends on our ability to embrace fuel-efficient, clean-energy vehicles,” DiCaprio said. “Venturi Grand Prix has shown tremendous foresight in their decision to create an environmentally friendly racing team, and I am happy to be a part of this effort.”
Venturi Grand Prix said it will now be put forward to the FIA for approval as the tenth and final team to enter the new zero emission series. Venturi joins international names from around the globe with IndyCar outfits Andretti Autosport and Dragon Racing, Asia’s China Racing, Super Aguri and Mahindra Racing, and European squads Drayson Racing, e.dams, Audi Sport ABT and Virgin Racing.
The team said it is centered around Venturi Automobiles, describing itself as a leader in high performance electric vehicles developing a range of sports, urban and utilitarian cars, as well as being the current holders of the world land speed record for an electric vehicle with 495 kilometers per hour (307mph).
The Venturi team also explained it plans to become a constructor from the second season, building its own Formula E car using a powertrain based on the one used in its 3,000 horsepower electric streamliner – Venturi VBB-3 – unveiled earlier this year in Wendover, Utah, by H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco.
“Venturi has been a pioneer in electric high performance vehicles for more than a decade and Formula E gives us the fantastic opportunity to further improve our advanced technologies through motorsport, as well as compete all over the world,” said Gildo. “It also gives us the chance to be part of a new racing program with a project that really shares Venturi’s values for clean mobility, innovation in the field of electric propulsion and energy efficiency optimization.”