Gas-Powered Non-Hybrid Wins $5 Million Automotive X Prize

Illustration for article titled Gas-Powered Non-Hybrid Wins $5 Million Automotive X Prize

The Edison2 Very Light Car has won the grand prize $5 million Progressive Automotive X Prize for a 100 mpg+ vehicle, and it did so without a hybrid drivetrain or battery power. Its secret? Small displacement and low, low weight.

The X Prize put $10 million in prize money up for designers interested in creating fuel efficient alternatives to our current automotive infrastructure that were producable and livable. Numerous teams entered, but just a few made it into the finals.

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In what's clearly a major victory for those who think lighter, simpler gas-powered cars are the future E85l-fueled, single-cylinder four-seater won out over hybrids and battery-electric vehicles for the mainstream prize. The strange Edison2 Very Light Car achieved a 102.5 mpg rating in testing with existing technology.

Illustration for article titled Gas-Powered Non-Hybrid Wins $5 Million Automotive X Prize

The other two winners include Li-Ion Motors, who captured $2.5 million with their Wave II electric vehicle and its 187 mpg equivalent. Switzerland's X-Tracer Team just won in the two-seat tandem category with a 205.3 mpg equivalent.

Now that the prizes have been handed out, the next big test is to see if any of these vehicles can succeed in the marketplace.

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[Consumer Reports]

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DISCUSSION

ash78
Ash78, voting early and often

I've always wondered why we couldn't sign a waiver and choose vehicles that don't meet minimum crash safety standards.

How much difference would the following accident scenarios be, anyway?

1. Miata vs Suburban

2. Edison car vs Suburban

3. Motorcycle vs. Anything

You're probably dead either way, and highway deaths are down to almost 1 person for every hundred million vehicle miles. That's so statistically insignificant that it shouldn't really affect our "passive car safety" mentality as much as it does. At least give us the choice.