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EcoCar: The NeXt Challenge

The United States Department of Energy has joined forces with General Motors (GM), Natural Resources Canada, and other sponsors to produce EcoCAR: The NeXt Challenge.

For 19 years, the Department of Engineering held advanced vehicle technology competitions. EcoCAR is an expansion of these competition efforts.

The NeXt Challenge is a three-year competition where engineering students design and build advanced vehicles while minimizing environmental impact. Goals of the challenge are to advance the level of vehicle performance while reducing petroleum consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. California’s zero-emissions vehicle regulation (ZEV) is another problem teams will address in the competition.

Teams from across the nation will compete to demonstrate the real-world performance of each vehicle and to discover a sustainable transportation future. By the end of the three-year competition, teams will have composed fully-developed vehicles equivalent to prototypes ready for a production decision.

Through EcoCAR, students gain knowledge and experience in engineering helping them to rapidly develop critical-thinking and teamwork skills. EcoCAR hopes to produce the next generation of leaders in the automotive industry.