May 23, 2006

French biofuel car takes European Shell Eco-Marathon 2006

Nogaro, France – A biofuel-powered car that achieved the energy equivalent of 2,885 km on a litre of gasoline was the top performer at the European Shell Eco-Marathon 2006 in France. It also took the “Climate Friendly” prize for the producing the least greenhouse gas emissions in the process.

Built by engineering students from the Lycee La Joliverie in France, the car completed seven laps of the Nogaro Circuit and finished on top, even though the weekend event first appeared to be dominated by hydrogen-powered vehicles. A hydrogen car built by a team from Polytech Nantes-La Joliverie, France, had led for most of the event with a 2,730 km per litre equivalent, but dropped to third place.

Teams from Germany, Finland, Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Switzerland, Italy, Turkey and the U.K. competed in the event. The marathon originated in a Shell-sponsored student team competition in the U.S. in 1977, while the European event was first held in France in 1985. This year, biodiesel, gasoline and hydrogen were all represented in the top 30 consumption rankings. The top finishers demonstrated the equivalent of driving from Paris to Beijing on only four litres of fuel.

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