July 24, 2002

World’s most environmentally-friendly vehicles to be shown at 4th annual Michelin Challenge Bibendum

Greenville, South Carolina – Michelin announced that the fourth edition of the Michelin Challenge Bibendum will take place September 22-25, 2002 in Europe. The Michelin Challenge Bibendum showcases the most environmentally-friendly innovations from the world’s largest vehicle manufacturers, technology developers and energy suppliers through a series of performance tests: emissions, noise, performance, safety and design. The event will begin in Heidelberg, Germany and conclude in Paris, France in time for the start of the Paris Auto Show. The route will include stops at the Hockenheim circuit and the European Parliament in Strasbourg.

“It is a true challenge in every sense of the word,” said Michael Fanning, vice president of public relations and government affairs, Michelin North America. “We challenge ourselves to provide the most objective and comprehensive platform to highlight a broad range of sustainable mobility options. The manufacturers are challenged as well: to improve each year, to innovate and to create vehicles that please driving enthusiasts and address environmental concerns.”

Last year’s Michelin Challenge Bibendum, which ran 226 miles from Los Angeles to Las Vegas, featured the largest collection of fuel cell vehicles in the world with 10 vehicles from seven different manufacturers. The 2001 Michelin Challenge Bibendum attracted a total of 51 active competitors, in addition to showcase vehicles, a host of static displays, and nearly 160 journalists from the United States and 21 other countries. The event included innovative production and concept vehicles from Ford, General Motors, Chrysler, Honda, Toyota, Nissan, Opel, Audi, BMW and Hyundai as well as a host of independent manufacturers and universities. Virtually every significant power and energy source was displayed including: Natural Gas, Propane, Liquid Natural Gas, Electric, Hydrogen Internal Combustion (ICE), Hydrogen Gas, Liquid Hydrogen, Diesel, Gasoline and Alcohol.

This year, the ADAC (Automobile Club of Germany), which is one of the most important consumers’ associations in the world, will be Michelin’s main partner and will assist in the performance testing. Through the Michelin Challenge Bibendum, Michelin offers those involved in the automotive and transportation sectors an opportunity to develop and evaluate the performance of the cleanest technologies to meet the challenge of sustainable mobility. Complete details are available at http://www.challengebibendum.com/.

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