[social_buttons] Teams from around the world are gearing up for the Automotive X Prize, a competition that will award part of $10 million to the team that builds the cleanest production-ready 100 MPGe (mile per gallon equivalent) vehicle.
This isn’t a race centered on space-age concept cars that will never see a US highway, but aims to jump-start the auto industry with revolutionary, super-efficient vehicles that consumers will actually want to buy. Entries must be ready for production and have a business plan outlining how they’ll be brought to market. They’ll also be judged on safety, cost, and features.
But the heart of the race is the requirement for ultra-efficiency, which can bring out the best in beautiful aerodynamic cars and new green technology (see below). All entries must get over 100 MPGe and meet strict emissions standards.
Over 60 teams have entered since the X Prize Foundation released guidelines for the contest over a year ago. I’ve already covered three of the competing vehicles here:
- Tesla Motor’s All-Electric Roadster, which just entered commercial production,
- Aptera’s $26,000 Electric Car and 300 MPG Hybrid which should be available next year, and
- Loremo’s 117 MPG Diesel Hybrid Sportscar
Teams can compete in two different vehicle classes: Mainstream or Alternative. Mainstream vehicles must be able to carry four passengers and have four wheels. Alternative entries only need to carry two passengers, and only require two wheels.
Preliminary judging for cost, safety, features, and business plan will take place before the end of the year. In 2009, vehicles still in the running will compete in a qualifying race designed to reflect typical consumer driving patterns, varied terrain, and weather. The Grand Prize Final Race will take place in 2010, and the winner must maintain 100 MPGe while emitting less than 200 g/mi of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and meeting legal emissions criteria in all 50 states.
It looks to be an exciting race. For more information, check out the website for the Progressive Automotive X Prize.
Source: Autopia (Mar. 20, 2008): Tesla, Aptera Among the Dozens Vying for the Automotive X-Prize
Photo Credit: AXP Blog