Lewis Hamilton used Twitter to announce the launch of his new Extreme E racing team, X44.

Named for the number he started racing with, Lewis Hamilton has used Twitter to announce the launch of his own Extreme E racing team, X44. The team will be racing from the first round in 2021 although Hamilton hasn’t said who’ll be driving.

In a statement Hamilton said, “Extreme E is an exciting new sustainability initiative, and this is a great opportunity to be involved from the outset as a team founder. Of course, my ambitions and commitments with Mercedes in Formula One mean that I won’t be operationally involved in X44, but I’m excited to play a different role in this new series, one that brings my vision for a more sustainable and equal world to life.

“Not only will we visit remote locations facing the front line of the climate crisis, we will also work closely with these locations and leading climate experts to share our knowledge and leave behind a positive legacy in each location which goes far beyond the race track.

“As Founder of X44, I am looking forward to building my team around important values such as sustainability and equality. None of us are perfect and we all have improvements to make, but I am excited to use our platform to highlight the most serious issues facing our planet and the solutions we can all be part of.”

In a video posted to Twitter, Hamilton said he was drawn to the series because it was doing something about climate change and bringing attention to the subject by holding electric vehicle racing rounds in areas impacted by climate change. “X44 is a team that is going to change the world for the better,” Hamilton said in a video posted to Twitter. “I can’t wait for X44 to take part in a new racing series and it’s amazing that we can do so whilst raising awareness of the climate crisis.”

“What is most appealing though, is that the Extreme E championship will be not only raising awareness of some of the most critical environmental issues facing our planet, but also doing something about it through working with local charitable organizations to leave behind no trace and a long-lasting legacy of change,” Hamilton said in a series of tweets.

“Every single one of us has the power to make a difference, and it means so much to me that I can use my love of racing, together with my love for our planet, to have a positive impact.”

Alejandro Agag, Founder and CEO at Extreme E said: “We are thrilled to welcome Lewis Hamilton and his X44 team to Extreme E. Like us, Lewis is hugely passionate about motorsport, but also shares our belief that we can use sport to highlight subjects which are vital to the world, such as climate change and equality.

What is Extreme E? Will see a bunch of teams compete in a handful of different locations around the world in a round robin format. Teams will race across tracks running from 6-10km in length and drivers will need to pass through virtual gates; the tracks will be a mixture of off-road and open ground.

What is Odyssey 21? This is the base vehicle that all teams will compete with. It’s a battery-electric SUV that makes 400kW and can get to 100km/h in 4.5 seconds and at gradients of up to 130%. Wow.

It’s made up of a common package of standardised parts, manufactured by Spark Racing Technology with a battery produced by Williams Advanced Engineering. This encompasses a niobium-reinforced steel alloy tubular frame, as well as crash structure and roll cage, whilst tyres, for both extreme winter and summer requirements are supplied by Continental Tyres. It’s understood teams can craft a bodyshell to resemble a sponsoring car maker’s vehicle.

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