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Day 6 Afternoon: Winners announced

Team Microjoule from France remained true to form and smashed the Rotterdam record for a Prototype petrol (gasoline) car. They improved on their 2013 performance by over 300 km to travel 3,314.9 km/l, more than enough to travel from Lisbon, Portugal, to Warsaw, Poland.

“We’re very happy,” says team leader Mickaël Fardeau. “It was a beautiful week with beautiful weather. The team and car were at their peak.”

In the hydrogen fuel cell Prototype category Dutch teams took first and second place, with Team H2A achieving 428.5 km/kWh equivalent. Austrians TERA TU Graz topped the Prototype battery electric category, with 1,091.6 km/kWh equivalent.

Team Microjoule from France

Team Microjoule from France

French teams also won the two remaining Prototype categories: Team IUT GMP Valenciennes went the furthest on diesel (1,300.1 km/l equivalent), and Team Toulouse Ingénierie Multidisciplinaire came top of the new alternative energy category, which combines ethanol and GTL: they drove 2,757.2 km/l equivalent on ethanol.

UrbanConcept winners

Three teams broke records in the UrbanConcept category. Favourites La Joliverie beat their own hydrogen fuel cell record – just – to travel 150.5 km/kWh. Another French team, Lycée Louis Delage, set a new record with petrol, covering 468.8 km/l equivalent. And Team Schluckspecht from Germany beat its own record in the diesel category, clocking up 389.0 km/l equivalent.

Another French team, Electricar solution, won the battery electric category, though it was not enough for a new record. Team DTU Roadrunners from Denmark took the alternative fuel prize, while not matching their own best distance.

Off-track awards

As well as prizes given for the top distances, the event rewarded safety, design, communications, technical innovation and tribology (the use of lubrication engineering). Team Kandó Electric, a high school from Hungary, picked up the design award for their bullet-like Prototype car which they optimised for minimal drag.

“We only started building the car in January,” says Zoltan Polyak. “We’re thrilled!”

Italian Team H2Polito was awarded the communications prize. With their own website and professionally produced booklets, the team has also taken its car on the road to shows in Turin, Italy, and Qatar. “Shell Eco-marathon is just a starting point,” says Alessandro Messana. “Whatever our result we will follow our dream – to build a sustainable car for the future.”

The Eco-motion team from France won the safety award; Hungarian Team GAMF won the technical innovation prize; and team Schluckspecht from Germany were ranked first for tribology.

“It’s all about reducing friction and selecting the right lubricant,” says Claus Fleig, Schluckspecht team manager. “Our engine is 20% more efficient.” Their diesel-powered UrbanConcept car, which won last year, this time achieved 389 km/l equivalent.

Read more about the off-track awards

Norman Koch, Technical Director Shell Eco-marathon, said this year’s competition was the best ever in Rotterdam. “Dozens of teams have improved on their performance of last year,” he said. “We’ve seen an incredible number of ingenious ideas.” These include the car from Portuguese team AERO@UBI which is steered by the driver leaning his body to one side, and the use of advanced technologies like direct fuel injection into a small 35 cc engine for better efficiency.

Running alongside the competition, Shell Energy Lab has welcomed over 40,000 visitors this week. The lab included interactive exhibits focused on the future of energy. Hanneke Hamer came on Saturday after her young son Tim was brought by his school two days previously and could not stop talking about it. “Tim used to want to be a pilot,” says Hanneke. “Now his dream is to build cars!”

Shell Eco-marathon Europe 2014 - at the finish line