Tour de Sol Winners Demonstrate Fuel Efficiency and Alt Fuels
May 24, 2006
Drivers often complain of achieving lower fuel economies than the official ratings from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, but you won't be hearing that anytime soon from the participants in the 18th Annual Tour de Sol, a green car show and competition held in early May in Saratoga Springs, New York. You'd be least likely to hear it from Wayne Gerdes, who drove a stock Honda Insight from Chicago to the event on a single tank of gas, achieving 90.4 miles per gallon (mpg) and winning first place in the event's Monte Carlo style Rally and Fuel Efficiency Competition. And if a Porsche is more your speed, consider Gavin Watson, who earned first place in the alternative fuel division of the rally by achieving 53 mpg with his veggie-oil-powered 1973 Porsche.
The event also features the Tour de Sol Championship, which challenges entrants to build vehicles that reduce gasoline use and climate change emissions. In the Championship, West Philadelphia High School took top honors in the student hybrid and alternative fuel division with a sports car that accelerates from 0 to 60 in 5.5 seconds and achieves a fuel efficiency of 55 mpg. In the battery electric division, the Burlington Electecs of Lawrenceville, New Jersey, took top honors with a student-built electric vehicle. See the full results and the press release on the Tour de Sol Web site.