Porsche brings onboard NetApp to boost e-vehicles thru Formula E

NetApp will provide over the next three years TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team with innovative hybrid cloud solutions, particularly real-time data collaboration to rev up their performance.

Porsche has begun shifting production towards electric or e-fuel powered vehicles in 2015. By the year 2030, Porsche AG aims for 80% of all vehicles sold to be electric. 

TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team helps deliver on this vision while enabling the real-time adjustments that deliver superior race performance – and help drive the next generation of Porsche electric vehicles.

NetApp’s hybrid cloud solutions enable TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team to access their data trackside to support driver and team performance. 

This helps them make data-driven decisions in real-time, for example when to use the Formula E Attack Mode, which unlocks an additional 30 kilowatts of engine power. 

The rules about engaging Attack Mode are set by FIA shortly before every ePrix, hence it has a great impact on race strategy.

The hybrid cloud data solution designed by NetApp and Porsche in response combines cloud network-attached (NAS) storage services with Global File Cache to ensure data can flow seamlessly and quickly between different widely dispersed locations.

“Formula E is a technology showcase and R&D backbone for Porsche and preserves our strong motorsports heritage on the road and on the track,” said Friedemann Kurz, head of Motorsport IT at Porsche. 

“Data is the defining element here, but it is not easy to harness when the racing team is always on the road,” said Kurz. “The solution created by NetApp is unique in the market in how it can move huge amounts of data at high speed while delivering an intuitive experience across edge, core and cloud so we can design better, faster cars for our racecar drivers and car enthusiasts everywhere.”

James Whitemore, EVP and chief marketing officer at NetApp, noted that Porsche has secured over 30,000 wins in all major car racing series. 

“NetApp has submitted more than 2,500 data innovation patents,” said Whitemore said. “Joining forces now, we are working to make our mark on the future of racing.”

Whitemore said digital data is collected by the cars’ many sensors as they dart along the track and is processed synchronously to predict outcomes to aid the trackside team. Thus, data equals speed.