120 MPG for Four Passenger Car

In a test at the Michigan International Speedway, a very light car called the “Edison 2″ averaged 120 miles per gallon for 100 laps. The Edison 2 is an experimental car designed for low fuel consumption. It is made mostly of recyclable aluminum and steel and uses a turbocharged 250 cc one cylinder engine powered by E85, an ethanol/gasoline blend. The main advantage of the Edison, besides its fuel efficiency, is its low weight. Electric engines, on the contrary generally rely on heavy batteries. The car weighs only about 750 pounds, and has a drag coefficient of .15. (A 2010 Prius has one of .25.) The Edison 2 can also carry four people.

Currently the car is competing for the Automotive X-Prize, in the class of cars that go at least 200 miles on one tank of fuel, or battery charge, have four wheels, and carry 4 passengers. The prize for winning the competition is five million dollars. Cars in the mainstream competition also have to be able to travel from zero to sixty miles per hour in 15 seconds or less, pass safety tests, and clear some other performance hurdles such as a hill-climbing event.

Racing on a track, of course, is different than more typical road driving. On the Edison blog, a comment was posted by a company representative about how their car would function on the road, “Yes our cars can get 100 MPG while sold for the street and while meeting emissions.”

If the Edison 2 completes all the tasks and wins the prize, then it could go on for further testing and development for potential mass production.

Image Credit: royalbroil

Note: Image above is not the actual track where testing took place.

30 comments

 .
.about a month ago

Fine method of telling, and enjoyable article to acquire factual statements.
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nobo dy
nobo dy5 years ago

thanks

John Van Hise
John Van Hise5 years ago

noted, thanks

Mike Masley
Michael Masley5 years ago

good article

Rowena D.
Rowena D.5 years ago

Will we ever see these on the road????

Marilyn L.
Marilyn L.5 years ago

Interesting.

Lynn C.
Lynn C.5 years ago

Hope to see more on this and a follow up on the winner of the competition. Lovely to see great ideas being rewarded.

Linda L.
Linda L.5 years ago

Great to hear about, but how safe it is compared to other vehicles is a real concern. I suppose it's as safe as a motercycle, but you don't take 3 people with you on a cycle-what safety measures are in the car?

Lynda H.
Lynda Hayles5 years ago

I would prefer to see advances in alternative fuels (preferably ones that don't destroy habitat and lives, like biofuel), but I suppose any advance is still a step forward. Jake, you didn't tell us what speeds it could achieve,- only acceleration and MPG. One aspect that worried me is that, if it is manufactured with lightweight materials, how would the occupants fare in a collision? Are we sacrificing our safety in our desperate need to reduce our environmental damage?

Pamela C.
Pamela C.5 years ago

It's really heartening to learn that folks are commited to developing eco friendly cars. Let's get them into production!