Jaguar: Something wrong if we win in Formula E early

Jaguar believes winning on its Formula E debut in Hong Kong would mean "something is wrong" with the series

Jaguar: Something wrong if we win in Formula E early

The British manufacturer will end a 12-year absence from major international motorsport when its works 2016/17 FE campaign starts this weekend.

Autosport's 2016/17 Formula E preview podcast

Its FE entry was only confirmed last December, when Jarno Trulli's team withdrew from the series.

That gave Jaguar a four-month timeframe before its powertrain needed to be crash-tested in April, and it had to be homologated by the FIA by June 1.

While its rivals have had to adhere to the same deadlines, senior Jaguar figures have stressed that most teams have a year's experience with their own powertrains, and their overall development process started at the end of 2014.

"If we're winning straight away, having never done it before, something is wrong with the formula," Jaguar race director Craig Wilson told Autosport.

"The formula is very competitive. We know we've got our work cut out to get to the stage, to be in that ballpark.

"That's exciting for us, but in the first few races target is to be reliable and competitive."

Wilson also pointed out that it was "playing catch up" across its "drivers, team and operations".

Jaguar confirmed FE rookies Adam Carroll and Mitch Evans as its drivers last month, while its inaugural powertrain will only be a glimpse at what the JLR-Williams Advanced Engineering technical partnership can produce, because of its short leadtime.

In addition to a compromised motor/gearbox/inverter package, Jaguar also has significantly less data than its rivals in areas like car set-up and energy management.

With the exception of Carroll's race engineer Patrick Coorey, signed from DS Virgin Racing, none of the Jaguar team has race-event FE experience.

"We've had a very steep learning curve and timeframe to work on since last year," added Wilson. "There's no question it's like being in a 100-metre race and giving them a headstart.

"It's part of the data set we're still developing. We don't have that toolbox to turn to for solutions when the car is behaving in a certain way."

While Jaguar's five-year stint in Formula 1, which ended in 2004, was a disaster, FE team director James Barclay said the marque's motorsport heritage meant it knew it was entering the series with the expectation of success.

"Jaguar is a brand with incredible history and success in the sport," he said.

"We've got a long-term commitment and it's no small thing but everyone knows the first season is a learning season.

"We've been around the sport long enough to expect we can dominate from round one is foolhardy."

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