The Automotive X-Prize, a $10 million competition to build the next generation of fuel efficient or battery powered vehicles, has come down to the final stages. Performance testing is complete, and only the validation stage remains; of 136 vehicles and 111 teams that started the competition, only 9 vehicles and 7 teams remain. Here’s a breakdown, by class, on who’s left:
Vehicles must seat four or more passengers, have four wheels and a minimum range of 200 miles. Only the Edison2 team remains, with their Very Light Car, numbers 97 and 98. The Very Light Car is an internal combustion engine powered vehicle, and the team comes from Charlottesville, VA.
Alternative Class – Tandem
Vehicles must seat two passengers in line and have a minimum range of 100 miles. There is no minimum number of wheels. Only the X-Tracer team remains, with their E-Tracer, numbers 72 and 79. The E-Tracer is a battery powered electric vehicle, and the team hails from Switzerland.
Alternative Class – Side by Side
Vehicles must seat two passengers in a conventional side by side layout and have a minimum range of 100 miles. There is no minimum number of wheels. Five teams, with a total of five vehicles, remain:
Team Li-ion Motors, from North Carolina, is competing with the battery electric Wave II.
Team RaceAbout Association, from Finland, is competing with the battery electric RaceAbout.
Team TW4XP, from Germany, is competing with the battery electric TW4XP.
Team ZAP, from Santa Rosa, CA is competing with the battery electric Alias.
The validation stage is conducted at Argonne National Labs and will certify that the cars are capable of at least 100 mpg fuel economy and meet emission and performance requirements. In the event of a tie, the vehicle that completes the Combined Performance and Efficiency Challenge with the lowest elapsed time will be the winner.
Assuming that the E-Tracer and Very Light Car pass Validation, these teams will win their respective classes. It’s still a dogfight in the Alternative Class, and I have to say I’m pulling for Team RaceAbout. I’ll give you a wrap-up once the testing is over and a winner is declared.