Forty teams and 400 students vie for honours in Shell’s India Eco-Marathon

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 03 Sep 2018


Global lube and energy major Shell, which is bringing their marquee event – Shell Eco-marathon (SEM) – to India for the first time, has reported receiving a strong response from the student community.

To be held in Chennai between December 6-9, 2018 as part of the ‘Make the Future India’ programme, a global platform for conversation, collaboration and innovation around the world’s energy challenges, 40 student teams with close to 400 students from India and other countries have signed up for the inaugural event in India. They stand to win total prize money of Rs 20 lakh across various categories.

The four-day event will see teams competing in two vehicle classes – the prototype class invites students to enter futuristic, streamlined vehicles, and the Urban Concept class focuses on ‘roadworthy,’ energy-efficient vehicles aimed at meeting the real-life needs of drivers. Entries will be divided into two energy categories: Internal combustion: petrol and diesel, and ethanol and battery electric.

Meanwhile, Shell India has extended the registration for the Shell Eco-marathon to September 7, 2018 to enable more students get a chance to test their custom-designed cars for fuel efficiency.  

Shell Eco-marathon, which was first inaugurated in 1939, is the world’s longest-running student competition wherein engineering students are challenged to design, build and test fuel-efficient cars. Indian teams have been participating since 2010 but this is the first time the competition will be held on home ground.

S-t-r-e-t-c-h-i-n-g fuel economy to the max
This is a marathon with a difference where student teams design, build and test cars for fuel efficiency. Unlike other marathons or car races, the Shell Eco-marathon recognises those teams who can go farthest on a litre of fuel rather than the fastest. Past competitions have seen student designed cars achieve mileage of up to 2,341 kilometres per litre (in the prototype ICE category)!

With events hosted in countries around the globe, they aim to provide an opportunity for multiple stakeholders: including students, entrepreneurs, businesses, governments and the public, to experience, test and contribute bright energy ideas. The India tracks will showcase demos for cleaner energy solutions; discussions on powering India’s progress – innovations, challenges and opportunities as well as partnerships for success.

According to the company, this is also an opportunity for student teams to test and fine-tune their vehicle for the Shell Eco-marathon Asia 2019.

Nitin Prasad, chairman, Shell companies in India, said: “Energy demand for a surging India will only grow. Economic, societal and individual needs for mobility will be a key contributor to this demand. India’s first Make the Future festival and Shell Eco-marathon offers young minds an opportunity to ideate, innovate and demonstrate out-of-the-box mobility solutions powered by efficient energy solutions. This is the need of the hour for India.”

Shreyas Ravi, manager, Team Infieon Supermileage, SRM University, Chennai, one of the student teams who have signed up for Shell Eco-,marathon said, “We are here to break the stereotype with our prototype model which has been built upon three objectives – minimum weight, maximum coasting distance and minimum fuel consumption.”

Shrey Kansal, manager, Team DTU Supermileage, Delhi Technological University, said: “The looming threat of fuel crisis worldwide, coupled with concerns regarding environmental pollution, inspired the team to come up with a workable fuel- efficient battery electric vehicle prototype. The vehicle which our team is working on is going to provide a mileage of 156km per unit of fuel source. In India as well as globally, electric vehicles are being seen as a potential alternative which could become the next big thing in the clean energy automation space.”

Shell says the first edition of the ‘invite only’ Make the Future India will host attendees from the energy, automotive, aviation, manufacturing and shipping industries as well as experts, academia, policy makers and students from schools and engineering colleges. In addition to the Shell Eco-marathon, the event will also showcase innovative energy and mobility solutions, host discussions on the future of mobility – innovations, challenges and opportunities – featuring experts from Shell and representatives from the automotive industry, start-ups, academia and other industry watchers. 

There will also be an Experience Zone showcasing  innovative ideas around mobility powered by cleaner energy.