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EV Cup electric motorsport series whirrs up to start line

Formula 1 could soon get a real run for its money. This summer will see the launch of the EV cup -- the first motor racing championship dedicated entirely to electric vehicles.

Formula 1 has long been considered the technological pinnacle of motorsport, but it could soon get a real run for its money. This summer will see the start of the EV cup -- the first motor-racing championship dedicated entirely to electric cars.

Three classes of vehicle will take part. The first will consist of race-prepared Think City EV cars, while the Sports EV class will see teams racing in Westfield iRacers (pictured above). A third, Prototype EV class will feature the latest non-production electric vehicles performing time trials through street and race courses.

Currently, none of the aforementioned classes of car will worry an F1 car for outright pace, but they could provide some entertaining races. The race-prepared Think City EV Cup Edition is said to be 70kg lighter than the standard car, so it'll complete 0-31mph in a fairly respectable 3.5 seconds and eventually reach motorway speeds.

The Westfield iRacers, meanwhile, should deliver more credible race performance. They're said to be capable of 0-60mph in under 5 seconds and can reach a top speed of 110mph, though this is limited in order to stretch the total range of the car to around 60 miles at race pace.

Races will take place in the UK, Portugal, Spain and the US. Britain already has several confirmed tracks and dates, including Silverstone on 6 August, Snetterton on 20 August, Rockingham on 10 September and Brands Hatch on 23 October. Each race day will include a qualifying round followed by on-site battery recharging, and a sprint race contested over 20 to 30 minutes.

Crave can spot several potential downsides to an EV-only race series -- the lack of atmosphere from ear-splitting engine noise and relatively few laps spring immediately to mind -- but we'll be watching the EV Cup with interest.

The Think City and Sports EV class could both make for entertaining races and, if nothing else, the EV Cup could go a long way to convincing the general public that electric vehicles have a future on our roads.