Formula 3 was first introduced in Britain after World War II – using low-cost 500cc motorcycle engines mounted in a small, nimble chassis. Although national championships were organised throughout Europe from the 1950s, it was not until 1975 that the FIA introduced a European F3 Championship. By that time the category stipulated 2000cc normally aspirated engines based on road car units.
The championship was replaced a decade later by a one-off, end-of-season race between the top contenders from the national series. The European F3 Cup was held between 1985 and 1990 before it also disappeared from the calendar.
A new European Champion was crowned once more in 2003 when the German and French series merged to form the F3 EuroSeries. That was initially a success with the likes of Lewis Hamilton, Paul di Resta (having beaten team-mate Sebastian Vettel), Romain Grosjean and Nico Hulkenberg among its champions. The FIA sanctioned a new European F3 Championship in 2011 that ran alongside the EuroSeries for two seasons before the latter was organised for the last time in 2012.