The Cal Poly Supermileage Team from California Polytechnic State University has announced its arrival into the Urban Concept category of the upcoming Shell Eco-Marathon, running March 26-28, with a battery-less, ultra high-mileage three-wheeler. Dubbed the Black Widow, the vehicle aspires to outclass the 230 mpg GM Chevrolet Volt with a 13 times higher mileage.
What makes Black Widow an impressive entry?
The 96-pound car offers an impressive mileage of 2752.3 mpg and reaches 30 mph with a modified 3 horsepower Honda 50cc four-stroke engine, thanks to its all-time low drag coefficient of 0.12.
Verent Chan, team president, said…
The car is capable of higher speeds, but the fastest we’ve ever taken it is somewhere around 35 mph. This is because we are trying to maximize the fuel efficiency for the competition. If we wanted to reach higher speeds, the engine has enough power. We would just need to set up our gear ratios differently.
Past exploits and future aspirations:
The Cal Poly team has earlier featured the same vehicle in the past three Eco-Marathons and has emerged victorious in 2007. In 2008 and 2009, the team bagged a comfortable second spot. So, we’re left with no reason that denies the Black Widow the top spot at the competition.