What is the Extreme E format?

There's qualifying, semifinals, a crazy race and a final - but what does all that mean?

Molly Taylor (AUS)/Johan Kristoffersson (SWE), Rosberg X Racing

The first-ever Extreme E X-Prix is now very much on the horizon with the world’s first electric off-road championship poised to get underway in Saudi Arabia this weekend.

It’s time for the talking to stop and the racing to start, but how exactly will that racing work?

There’s been a late format change that has thrown a late spanner into the works, but here is DirtFish’s handy guide to how the first-ever weekend of Extreme E will unfold.

Car sharing

Extreme E Preseason Testing

Extreme E isn’t just unique in the respect that it’s an off-road electric racing championship. It’s also the only global motorsport series to mandate that each team’s Odyssey 21 is driven by both a male and a female racer.

They will share their team’s car and complete one lap each of all races, swapping over halfway through the two-lap contest.

Each race is estimated to be around 11 miles in length where every team will be able to take advantage of ‘hyperdrive’ boost once per lap. Activated by pressing a button on the steering wheel, this gives the driver extra power for a fixed amount of time.


There will be two qualifying heats held on the Saturday of an Extreme E weekend, comprising four races: five cars in one heat and four in another.

These qualifying races will be held on the Saturday, but for this weekend’s Desert X-Prix they will now be time trial events, as opposed to races, due to concerns with dust.

Like in rallycross, points are awarded as per finishing position from each race (12pts down to 4pts from first to ninth place) with the top-three scorers from the two races advancing to the semifinal.


Extreme E Preseason Testing

Sunday will play host to the semifinal, crazy race, shootout and the final.

As already mentioned, the top three from qualifying will head to the semifinal with the top two from that three-car race making it to the X-Prix final.

The crazy race is for the teams that were fourth, fifth and sixth in qualifying and the winner of that three-car affair will book themselves a spot in the X-Prix final.

The shootout is for the teams that were seventh, eighth and ninth in qualifying and their finishing position in that race will dictate if they get championship points for seventh, eighth or ninth place.

Naturally, the X-Prix winner will be the team that wins the final. They will then receive 25 championship points with second earning 19, third 18, fourth 15, fifth 12, sixth 10 and then eight, six and four points being awarded for the final three places.