The EcoCAR2 challenge was officially launched at the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE International) World Congress. Born from a partnership between the manufacturer General Motors and the United States Department of Energy (DOE), the competition will set 16 teams from 16 North American universities against each other for 3 years.
The challenge: to reduce the environmental impact of one of the American constructor’s flagship models, without compromising on performance, on safety or on price.
During the first year, the teams will design their model and carry out driving simulations. They’ll then work on building the powertrain system and will dedicate their final year to putting the vehicle into production.
Towards the future of the car
During the three years of the programme, the participants will have to follow a real-world Vehicle Development Process (VDP), as all manufacturers do. This roadmap should eventually allow them to produce vehicles that are technically, economically and ecologically viable.
The experiment aims to energise and enrich a new generation of automotive engineers who are aware of the issues of sustainable mobility. Ultimately, everyone should be a winner here, notably the automotive sector, probably with great ideas for the future, and the general public which will possibly see one of these vehicles arrive on the market.