Cruising to the Finish Line
18 Oct 2019
The City of Adelaide was filled with joy today, as the field of Challenger and now Cruiser Class teams spent the day crossing the City of Adelaide Finish Line.
For the Cruisers, it's not a race of speed, but a competition of strategy, effiency and style. Australia’s Sunswift in ‘Violet’, Hong Kong’s IVE Engineering Solar Car Team in ‘Sophie 6’, and 2017 Cruiser Champions, Dutch Solar Team Eindhoven in Stella Era are in the overall points lead.
All three, from the original field of 17, are the only ones to have driven the entire course, and make all the timed checkpoints.
Billed as the ‘race within the race,’ to win the Cruiser Class takes a combination of strategic energy management, endurance and more than a little style. These solar electric cars designed to bring the green to the mainstream have never been about being first across the line.
A panel of international adjudicators will score each entry based on design innovation, environmental impact, ease of access, interior comfort, style and desirability. Some of the key features pushing the limits of technology include energy sharing with the grid and with others; proprietary battery systems; custom drivetrains, eco-friendly materials and smart systems.
Other Cruisers to cross the line today included, one of the most colourful, ATN Solar Car Team’s Queen of the Desert, ‘Priscilla’, looked dazzling with pink feather boas, Germany’s Team Hochschule Bochum in SunRiser, Thailand’s Siam Technology in STC3, Tafe SA in their demonstration solar SAV, Poland’s Lodz in Eagle Two, China’s Sun Shuttle, Flinders Automotive Solar Team in Investigator Mk 3, and UK’s Cambridge in ‘Helia’.
South Australia’s Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, David Ridgway was on the finish line to welcome the teams to Adelaide.
Event Director, Chris Selwood AM, said the 2019 Cruiser Class surpassed expectations.
‘Each event raise the bar – pushing these teams by making the regulations more difficult. The best of these solar electric vehicles can cover distances of up to 1200 kilometres without charging from the grid – that’s superior to most electric vehicles on the market today.
Combine that with smart features, energy sharing capability like Eindhoven’s Stella Era, billed as a charging station on wheels, and we see our driving future is already here,” Mr Selwood said.
Challenger teams also continued to cross the finish line today. In one of the toughest crossing in the event’s history 13 Challengers have now retired.
Still in the competition – Canada’s Blue Sky Solar arrived today in Viridian. Australia’s Adelaide University in Lumen II, Japan’s Goko High School in Musoushin and UK Durham University in Ortus.
The Cruiser Class judging is open to the public tomorrow, so be sure to come along to learn more about these incredible cars. You might even see the car you'll one day be driving every day!
Find out more about the Cruiser Class judging and the City of Adelaide Finish Line here.
You can also see some of the best moments from the 2019 BWSC in our Photo Gallery.