A Look Ahead to Year Three Competition Finals

As the countdown to the EcoCAR Challenge Finals begins, 16 universities across North America prepare for the third and final year of the EcoCAR: The NeXt Challenge series.

Over the last academic year, EcoCAR teams have spent countless hours refining their prototype advanced technology vehicles that will be judged in more than a dozen technical events at this year's competition finals, which will be held June 5-16, 2011. Events will take place at General Motor's Milford Proving Grounds in Milford, Michigan, and at locations throughout Washington, D.C.

Activities will commence with a Team Welcome Night on Sunday, June 5th at Lucky Strike Novi. Teams will get a chance to blow off some steam with bowling, arcade games, and team skit videos. After a night of some fun, all their hard work will be put to the test during a series of technical and outreach events over the next ten days. The first leg of competition will take place June 6-12 in Milford, Michigan, where EcoCAR vehicles will undergo engineering tests similar to those conducted by the automotive industry to determine a prototypes readiness for production. Team vehicles will be judged by a variety of tests including a Safety and Technical Inspection, Dynamic Consumer Acceptability, Static Consumer Acceptability, Braking, Acceleration, Autocross, and Emissions & Energy Consumption testing.

The competition continues June 12-16 in Washington, D.C., where teams will highlight their efforts from throughout the year with presentations on the following categories: Technical, Controls, Outreach and other various sponsored awards. In addition, on June 14, the group will come together for a Sponsor Social and Awards event, where sponsors will set up trade show displays and network with EcoCAR students. During the Sponsor Social and Awards event, a variety of awards will handed out, including outreach awards, some technical awards, and other special awards. Teams will also have the chance to take part in radio and satellite media tours on June 14 and June 15 in Washington, D.C.

On June 16, teams will venture to the U.S. Department of Energy for a Finish Line and Ride and Drive event. Teams will have the chance to display their near-production vehicles to the public, the media, and to their Congressional members.

The Year Three Competition Finals concludes on Thursday, June 16 with an evening Awards Ceremony at the Library of Congress, where awards totaling nearly $100,000, based on contributions by industry sponsors, will be handed out and top six teams will be announced. Teams will also have the chance to explore some of the exhibits at the Library of Congress, including the Gallery and exhibits on Thomas Jefferson, Creating the United States, and the Civil War.

Be sure to keep up with all the action by following the teams at the Green Garage Blog and we look forward to seeing you in Milford and Washington, D.C.!



May 2011