UW students turning muscle car into 'green machine'

EcoCar 3 -- North America's premiere automotive engineering competition -- has challenged college teams from across the country to turn an American muscle car into a green machine.

SEATTLE – EcoCAR 3, North America's premiere automotive engineering competition, is wrapping up in Seattle this week. College teams from across the country are working to turn an American muscle car into a "green machine."

EcoCAR 3 is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy and General Motors and managed by Agonne National Laboratory. The competition is designed to put some of America's brightest young minds to work building cars of the future.

"Really we're all in this together," said UW senior Sylvie Troxel. "We want to make the best car and to do that we have to work together."

Sixteen university teams from across the country are in Seattle working on solutions to keep a brand new Chevy Camaro looking and feeling the same. However the goal is to make sure the American muscle run on something besides gasoline. For the UW team, that means an electric solution.

"The outside looks mostly the same," said UW senior Ryan Mallory. "The interior is going to look all the same. However we're taking the engine, removing it … removing everything that relates to the gasoline portion of the vehicle and replacing it with our own systems. So we're adding a battery pack to it. We're adding electric motors. We're adding a new engine."

Mallory, a computer and electrical engineering major, is heading to Stanford for graduate school after this year's competition.

Next year's competition will mark year two of EcoCAR 3. Officials say the final products of the new Camaro produced from each team should be complete during year four.

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