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Mike debates Next Generation Technologies at Autosport International

January 20, 2023

MGI Engineering CEO Mike Gascoyne, and newly appointed Commercial Director Cris Hiche, headed to the 2023 Autosport International Show in Birmingham for their first event of the year. The pair explored the vast motorsport, automotive, and engineering offerings at the show. Mike also took part in the Next Generation Technologies panel discussion in the Business Forum, featuring alongside Cosworth and Extreme E panellists Simon Dowson, James Taylor, and George Imafidon. 

Mike used this opportunity to speak about how MGI Engineering are looking at sustainable mobility, its efficiency, and performance of vehicles. Mike explained how MGI uses its passion for engineering, and its vast experience in the top tier of motorsport, to apply this to newly emerging markets like Electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing (eVTOL) and electric vehicles. 

As part of the panel, Mike explained, “The use of lightweight structures and adding lightweight materials is important. It is crucial to everything, in aerospace, motorsport, and the marine industry. It is the key for ensuring that hydrogen and battery applications are viable and that we can move towards using them in the future. If you want to make battery, or even hydrogen more viable, you have got to have a more efficient powertrain, and structurally light vehicles to put them in. It is not just the fuel, it is also the vehicle.”

Discussing the aviation industry, Mike added, “If you look at aviation, building a plane as we currently build them is not going to solve the problem. The UK doesn’t have a great aerospace industry anymore, but, it actually has the world’s best niche vehicle, hybrid-powered, composite, lightweight structured industry in the world through motorsport and F1. When we look at electric aviation and eVTOL, that is just a niche, hybrid-powered, composite, lightweight structured vehicle that also happens to fly. We have the best industry in the world. We are the best in the world at F1 and motorsport, and we have to be applying that in the future.” 

One of the lessons that MGI Engineering tries to instil within its company culture from its motorsport heritage, is that it is not just about the technology. It is about the philosophy of solving problems and pushing the boundaries, pushing to the limit. An example of this is with electric aircraft. There are design challenges around current battery technology that must be solved, so we must push the limit of what can be done.

For both Mike and Cris, the show was a good way to network with different businesses and discuss the engineering challenges facing the industry. 

After the convention Commercial Director Cris Hiche said, “Autosport International was a good show to start the new year. It was not only an opportunity to see some friendly faces and speak with people from the old days in the paddock, but also to observe the future of motorsport.” 

CEO Mike Gascoyne said, “It was a great chance to speak about the future of motorsport and the lessons we have learnt from 30+ years involvement in motorsport that we are currently applying towards newly emerging industries. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience of being on the Next Generation Technologies discussion panel which highlighted the importance of non-fossil fuel motorsports competitions that are bringing motorsport into a new era of electrification, such as Extreme E. Not only is electrification of motorsports pushing the boundary of challenges in mobility, but the electrification within aerospace, along with the design challenges we face, is a frontier we explore and is a goal MGI Engineering will achieve.”