This Student-Designed Car Can Cross The U.S. on Just One Gallon of Gas

Université Laval

(Truth Theory) How far could you travel on a single gallon of gasoline? For most people, that distance would be 20 – 40 miles. With a new Alérion Supermileage car which was designed by students at Quebec’s Université Laval, you could travel the entire distance of the United States of America. That’s because the lightweight vehicle gets 2,713.1 miles per gallon of gasoline.

The students won first place at the Shell Eco-marathon Americas contest for internal combustion engine cars with their invention that can travel the distance between Atlanta, Georgia and Seattle, Washington, on one gallon of gas. As Inhabitat reports, engineers compete every year to win the Shell competition for most fuel-efficient vehicles. And, this isn’t the first time the Université Laval students snagged a first prize. In fact, they’ve won seven of the ten competitions that have taken place in the past decade. This year, the team beat out 30 other student-designed vehicles.

Université Laval

Because the students want to maintain a competitive edge in the competition, little is known about how the vehicle works. However, from a former winning entry from Université Laval, it has been discovered that the students incorporated a Briggs & Stratton single cylinder 3.5 horsepower engine in one of their winning vehicles. Thin tires help minimize surface area contact and a carbon fiber body keeps the car lightweight.

According to HowStuffWorks, super-mileage vehicles are capable of obtaining all their mileage through a car body stripped down to only the elements necessary for speed and safety. By making it smaller and more wind-resistant, the aerodynamic design is improved.

Over 100 students participated in the Shell competition. Vehicles could be entered into classes: UrbanConcept cars (designed to provide a solution to real-life road needs) and Prototype cars (more futuristic and streamlined). As you might have guessed, the winning car was entered under Prototype car and will most definitely be improved upon for future competitions.

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