Leonardo DiCaprio raised eyebrows several years ago when he arrived at the Oscars not in an Escalade or stretch limo, but in a Toyota Prius. It was his announcement to the world of his commitment to the environment. Years later and DiCaprio is looking for more ways to show his support for environmentally friendly causes, and has just done so by funding an electric racing team.
As we’ve covered previously, Formula E is a new FIA-sanctioned electric racing series. It has attracted the likes of Richard Branson, who is fielding a Virgin Racing team, as well as noted electric/hybrid racing outfit Drayson Racing.
According to Pistonheads.com,DiCaprio has backed Venturi racing, which is also working on a 3,000-horsepower electric land speed record car. The Formula E car will be less powerful but should be just as exciting as ten teams (with two cars per team) take to the streets of London, Beijing, Los Angeles, Miami, Rome, Berlin, Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, Putrajaya (Malaysia), and Bangkok throughout the 2014 inaugural season.
“The future of our planet depends on our ability to embrace fuel-efficient, clean-energy vehicles,” said DiCaprio of the eco-minded racing series. “Venturi Grand Prix has shown tremendous foresight in their decision to create an environmentally friendly racing team, and I am happy to be a part.”
Racing has been known to push forward the cutting edge of motoring technology, as it did with conventional powertrains throughout the majority of the 20th century. Here’s hoping that DiCaprio’s participation in Formula E will raise awareness and credibility for the upstart electric racing series as it seeks to push development of EVs.