Consumer prototype first drive!

 CBS Detroit 

Edison2 Unveils New Super-MPG Car At The Henry Ford

DEARBORN — Finally, a 21st Century car that really looks like it came from the 21st Century.

The venue was appropriate. The Henry Ford is a shrine to American innovation, and the Edison2 is packed with innovation from stem to stern.


Getting Ready for Detroit

Edison 2 is one of 5 X Prize teams exhibiting at the 2010 International Auto Show the next two weeks in Detroit. So we are having a very busy time this week. We brought our show car, Bullitt (also our entry in the Alternative – side by side class) back from Charlottesville yesterday with a gleaming new silver paint job. Today and tomorrow are final touches here in our Lynchburg shop.

Oliver, Brad and Julian will load Bullitt into the trailer on Friday and then they are off to Motor City; the show starts on Monday. Last year over 650,000 people attended. This is a big deal, and based on our experience at the Las Vegas SEMA show we expect to create a buzz. Especially since The X Prize teams are exhibiting on “Electric Avenue” and we have the only car without a plug or array of batteries. It should be very interesting; follow us on Twitter!


Why Not Electric?

When we decided to enter the X Prize competition we expected to choose an electric or hybrid power source. The closer we looked, however, the less attracted to electricity we were.
Our main issue with electricity is that the extra weight of batteries ultimately means more energy is needed to move a heavier vehicle.  Low weight is an absolute virtue for an efficient car, but batteries inevitably add to a vehicle’s weight. So we moved away from lugging around the weight of batteries and instead sought efficiency through basic physics.
The Very Light Car is extremely light and extremely aerodynamic. The aerodynamics fellow at Northrup Grumman, Barnaby Wainfan, is a designer of our car. Every component of the Very Light Car has been evaluated for function and redesigned with an eye to simplicity, strength and low weight. Brakes that normally weigh 10 lbs are less than a pound; lug nuts 0.2 oz instead of 2 oz. In some ways our car is light because it is light; as mass is designed out of the car, components can be smaller and lighter, and the car becomes lighter still.
We believe this design, with our efficient engine, positions us well for the X Prize competition.  Our car is favored by physics. More important, however, our innovations in weight and aerodynamics apply regardless of power source, making a hybrid or electric car much more efficient.


Here We Go!

The X Prize competition knockout qualifying events are only 4 months away, but at Edison2 we decided it was time to share the excitement we're experiencing.  The car we are building, the Very Light Car, will be safe, nimble, and get over 100 MPGe (Miles Per Gallon Equivalent). A car that is truly environmentally friendly, cradle to grave.  A car that is simple to assemble and affordable to buy.  The most efficient platform ever built. 


We are starting this blog so the world can follow us as the competition approaches.  We will update you on the Very Light Car, and how other teams are progressing (110 team entered in June; 39 remain).  We will talk about other issues, like why we chose a carbon-based fuel instead of electricity as our power source.  Get to know us and our team, our ideas, and our challenges.  We invite everyone to send comments, questions, and suggestions.  

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