The Brit finished second behind reigning champion Lucas di Grassi who won his first E-Prix of the season after the race was turned on its head due to a mass of drive through penalties as the race entered its final stages.
With ten laps left when five of the top eight racers including Championship leader Jean-Eric Vergne were all found guilty of speeding during a yellow flag earlier in the race which saw Bird jump from sixth to second while Vergne dropped to 12th – finishing 10th.
Switzerland welcomed its first motor race in over 60 years after the sport was banned in the country due to the 1954 Le Mans disaster and the crowd were treated to masses of drama from the front of the grid to the back.
Setting the tone for a tough day, Vergne was the first car out for qualifying and undertook what he called a ‘nightmare lap’ which was a whole second slower than fastest Mitch Evans and he qualified in 17th. Bird managed to sneak into Super Pole in fifth.
Evans repeated the trick in Super Pole to secure his and Jaguar’s first pole ever in Formula E while Bird improved his position to third – Vergne’s Techeetah teammate Andre Lotterer securing a very handy second.
There was an early collision between race winner in Berlin Daniel Abt and Nelson Piquet JR on the chicane which forced both to pit after just five laps. Lucas di Grassi was pushing Bird as Lotterer played the team role in backing the title challenger into the Brazilian.
Meanwhile Vergne was carving his way through the order, lifting himself up into 10th and into the points within just 10 laps – helped by the enforced pitting and Edoardo Mortara ending his day due to destroying his tyre by clipping the wall.
Di Grassi soon passed Bird and then made quick work of Lotterer as well – continuing to show the new pace which has summed up the Audi car in the second half of the season.
Vergne next aggressively took on Felix Rosenqvist and the Swede dramatically was forced into the wall as Vergne refused to give way on the overtake. Moments later di Grassi cruised past Evans as the Jaguar was forced to conserve energy to lead a race for the first time this season.
And Vergne now moved to seventh after going flying past Jerome D’Ambrosio despite driving straight over car debris left on the track – miraculously avoiding a puncture – and a full-track yellow flag was called and all cars pitted.
A terrible pit stop forced Vergne back into ninth after his car wouldn’t start losing him 12 seconds, and the team radio picking up plenty of profanity, in comparison to di Grassi who flew out and opened up a massive gap – one he would never relinquish.
It was announced with ten laps left that of the top eight racers; Evans, Lotterer, Jose Maria Lopez, Sebastien Buemi and Vergne were all under investigation by the FIA for speeding during the yellow flag and all were found guilty.
This took Vergne from sixth down to 12th while lifting Bird, who had been dropping farther and farther back on the grid, up into second.
Di Grassi and Bird both held their positions for the final stages while D’Ambrosio got on the podium for the first time this season for himself and Dragon Racing.
Oliver Turvey, in the final stages, helped his countryman Bird by holding off Vergne who had to end the race in 10th place and open things up as we head to New York – a race Bird won twice last season.