A group of students from Mississippi State University has won this year's Challenge X competition by re-engineering a Chevrolet Equinox Crossover SUV to maximize fuel efficiency and minimize pollution.
The team's turbocharged direct-injection diesel engine fueled by B20 biodiesel was 38% more fuel-efficient than the original and produced 44% less pollution but managed to improve quarter-mile acceleration by 1.6 seconds.
All three of the top-placing teams employed B20 biodiesel, a blend of 20% biodiesel with 80% petroleum diesel.
The competition was sponsored by General Motors, the U.S. Department of Energy and Natural Resources Canada. Seventeen university teams competed.
This competition is a unique demonstration of how tremendous technological advancements that are occurring at universities across North America can help us achieve a new energy future one that is cleaner, more sustainable, more affordable, more secure and less reliant on carbon-based fossil fuels, Secretary of Energy Samuel W. Bodman said.
Up next: the EcoCAR challenge, which will challenge 17 university teams to re-engineer a Saturn VUE.
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