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X Prize winners, finalists: A 100 mpg mandate (photos)

For Automotive X Prize, scientists from around the world show that a 100 mpg challenge can be met and still provide safety to highway drivers.

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Candace Lombardi
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1 of 8 Edison2

Very Light Car No. 98

Very Light Car No. 98 by the team Edison2 will receive $5 million for winning the mainstream, four-seater category of the Automotive X Prize sponsored by Progressive Insurance. The aerodynamic car has a combustion engine running on E85, an ethanol-gas blend, and has a total efficiency of 102.5 MPGe.

Automotive X Prize speakers heaped praise on winners and finalists alike at today's awards ceremony at the Historical Society in Washington, D.C. The challenge set for this particular prize from the famed X Prize Foundation was to design and build a car with a fuel economy of 100 MPGe, a new acronym for a vehicle that gets "miles per gallon or energy equivalent."

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2 of 8 Edison2

Very Light Car

An early version of the Very Light Car by Edison2 being tested at the Carolina Center for Automotive Research.
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3 of 8 X Prize Foundation

Wave II

Team Li-ion from North Carolina led by Ron Cerven won the side-by-side two-seater category, and $2.5 million, for its Wave II built by Li-ion Motors. The Wave II all-electric car has a lithium ion battery, a 170-mile range, and a top speed of 80 mph. It can go 0 to 60 mph in 12 seconds, and includes common amenities like air conditioning, power windows, and GPS.
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4 of 8 Peraves

E-Tracer 7002

The E-Tracer 7002 by team X-Tracer from Switzerland will get $2.5 million for winning the tandem two-seater (seating one behind the other) category. The all-electric cabin motorcycle built by Peraves has a total efficiency of 187.6 MPGe, a top speed of 150 mph, a 150 mile-range, and can go 0 to 60 mph in 6.6 seconds.
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5 of 8 Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Sciences

Electric RaceAbout

Team RaceAbout, led by Sami Ruotsalainen, placed just O.179 seconds behind the winner of the side-by-side two-seater category for its Electric RaceAbout, made by team of experts affiliated with the Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Sciences.
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6 of 8 Aptera

Aptera 2e

The Aptera 2e, from team Aptera led by Marques McCammon, was a finalist in the side-by-side two-seater category. The vehicle has a top speed of 90 mph and includes among its key sponsors battery maker A123 systems, and Pratt & Miller Engineering.
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7 of 8 TW4XP

TW4XP

Team TW4XP of Germany led by Martin Möscheid, a finalist for its side-by-side two-seater, is shown here being taken for a test drive in Chicago. The TW4XP is based on the Twike, a light-electric vehicle made in Germany by Fine Mobile.
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8 of 8 ZAP

Alias

Team ZAP of the automaker of the same name was led by Gary Starr. It was a finalist for its Alias plug-in electric car that meets highway legal standards as an enclosed motorcycle. A production version of the car will sell for under $35,000.

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