Solar Team Great Britain has started a kickstarter page to help fund their design for entry in the 2017 World Solar Challenge. Founder Steven Heape leads a team of volunteers from many different disciplines, companies and universities working on a family-sized solar car to compete in the cruiser class. “Cruiser Class is about two or more seats. It’s about a practical car,” says Heape.
The car will carry passengers and is designed to be road legal in the UK. The race itself covers 3,022km from Darwin to Adelaide. In the cruiser class, the winner must balance speed , practicality and energy efficiency. A typical family car would consume approximately 5,000 kWh on the route. In the 2013 race a four-seater solar car completed the route with an energy consumption of only 64 kWh.
The 2017 challenge takes place from October 8-15. The team has already been to Australia and driven the route to gather data. They plan to begin road testing the vehicle in April. If successful the car will be shipped to Australia in July.
The purpose of the project is to raise awareness of the need for clean transportation alternatives and to inspire students and young professionals to work towards sustainable projects. The kickstarter page has a goal of £20,000 by February 22nd. This will cover 5% of the funds needed. The remaining funds will be provided by over a dozen sponsors.
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