Top Gear Special: Formula E vs WRC vs Formula One Car... Drag Race In The Wet!
Stig’s Christmas wish came true as it took the wheel of Lewis Hamilton’s 2019 Championship winning F1 car against in one of the most extreme drag races of 2021by Khris Bharath, on LISTEN 04:41
Top Gear recently put out a clip, which is most probably an excerpt from their Christmas special that airs exclusively on BBC iPlayer or BBC America. This was a big one you had some of the best cars from the world of motorsport go head to head in a drag race
You had Top Gear’s current presenters, i.e Freddie Flintoff, Paddy McGuinness, and the legendary Chris Harris donning Christmas Jumpers, who were strangely bystanders on this occasion, witness the Stig’s Christmas wish come true. Top Gear’s mysterious resident test and racing driver was seen sitting in the Mercedes Petronas AMG F1 Car.
Before we begin, let’s quickly look at the numbers of these top-tier cars from the world of motorsport.
Formula E Car - Team DS
In the golden corner, representing Formula E, we have the futuristic all-electric E-TENSE FE21 single-seater racing car from Team DS. The DS TECHEETAH has 14 wins, 36 podiums of the 63 races it has taken part in so far.
It packs a 50 kW battery and packs a max power output of 338 horsepower. Now we don’t have the exact torque figure but expect power delivery to be instantaneous as this is an EV. The Formula E car weighs 1990 pounds with the driver.
WRC - Ford Fiesta
The Ford Fiesta WRC rally car looks mega with its body kit and those rally-bred wheels. It was designed to FIA technical regulations back in 2017. To date, it has taken 9 wins, 32 podiums, and 5 titles across 58 races.
Under the hood lies a bespoke Ford 1.6 liter direct injection mill, that produces 380horsepower and 450 and 332 pound-feet of torque. Power is sent to the tarmac via a six-speed sequential gearbox and an all-wheel-drive system. Being a rally car, the Ford is packing some heavy-duty hardware in terms of its suspension setup. The Fiesta WRC tips the scales at 2623 pounds.
Formula One - Mercedes Petronas AMG
Finally, last but not the least, we have the 2019 Mercedes Petronas AMGs W10 F1 race car, which not only made Lewis Hamilton the driver’s champion that year, but it also won Mercedes the Constructors title as well. Of the 21 races it took part in 2019, this series of the silver arrow has 15 wins, 32 podiums and. 10 plus to its name.
It’s packing a 1.6-liter turbocharged V-6 hybrid engine that produces a truly outrageous 1000 horsepower, with power going to only the rear wheels via an 8-speed sequential gearbox. The engine revs to 15000 rpm and has a top speed in excess of 200 mph. The F1 car is the lightest of the bunch at just 1638 pounds.
Now the F1 car is the lightest of the trio, however, with rear-wheel drive, it would most likely struggle to get off the line on this damp track. With that, the three cars are ready for this showdown. Three, Two, One, Go!!! And they’re off. The Fiesta with its AWD was quickest off the line and that 1.6 EcoBoost also sounds great.
Meanwhile, the Stig in the F1 car as predicted struggles for traction, despite being on full wet tires. However, once he got going, it was no contest really as the F1 car tore past the Rally car, and eventually, the Christmas tree took the win. The Formula E car was nowhere unfortunately in this contest and came in last.
Putting this piece together was a lot of fun. Expect some big changes to come to the M-Sport line of rally cars in the coming years with Hybrid powertrains for the first time. Big changes are also expected in F1 for 2022 and as for Formula E, the limited top speed will soon climb to 200 mph thanks to more power. I for one can’t wait to revisit this showdown in a couple of years and would be nice if a NASCAR contender also joins the next time around.
You can watch how the race unfolds in the clip below put out by Top Gear