A total of 118 teams of students from schools and universities in 17 countries in the Asia-Pacific region, Middle East and Australia came together for the seventh edition of Shell Eco-marathon Asia, which took place in Manila, Philippines from March 3-6. 

The event, part of a larger student innovation competition including the Americas and Europe, attracted around 30,000 visitors and saw students set four new mileage records. It was the third and final Shell Eco-marathon to be held in the city. The location of the 2017 event will be announced soon .

This year’s youngest participants were 16 year-olds from the City of Bogo Science and Arts Academy in the Philippines. They designed their carbon-fibre car in the form of a raindrop, one of the most aerodynamic shapes.

How little energy?

Shell Eco-marathon sees teams compete in two categories to drive the longest distance with the smallest amount of energy. 

In the Prototype category, drivers squeeze into low-slung cars, lying on their backs. In the UrbanConcept category, cars look more familiar, sometimes with several seats. Built for the real world, their extra weight can make them less fuel-efficient than Prototype cars, but they are still able to achieve impressive results.

Competitors use a range of fuels – from hydrogen and battery power, to traditional fuels as well as alternatives such as ethanol – to power their cars. Technical experts at the event calculate how far they could travel on the equivalent of a single litre of gasoline.

First-time participants Team HVCT from the Ho Chi Minh Vocational College of Technology, Vietnam, and Team The Imirates Falcon from the Higher Colleges of Technology – Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, were among the earliest to clear the rigorous technical inspection with their Prototype gasoline cars.

“We initially faced challenges with our fuel system, but we managed to pass technical inspection on our second attempt, which we felt was a miracle,” said Pham Hong Thang of Team HVCT.

Setting new records

Setting a new Asia event record in the Prototype alternative fuel category with ethanol, Team how much Ethanol from Panjavidhya Technological College, Thailand, clinched first place with the equivalent of 2,040 kilometres per litre – almost the straight-line distance between Manila and Bangkok.

Team Sadewa from Universitas Indonesia in the UrbanConcept gasoline category more than doubled last year’s winning result, recording 275km/l.

Other teams with new mileage records included Clean Diesel Team from Japan, who beat their previous record with 1,424km/l in their Prototype vehicle running on biodiesel. 

Team UiTM Eco-Sprint from Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) Shah Alam Malaysia also bettered their own 2015 winning result to champion the Prototype hydrogen fuel cell category with a record mileage of 476 km/m3.


Victory off the track

Teams also competed for off-track awards that tested their approach to safety, vehicle design and technical innovation, and their ability to run an effective promotional campaign. 

From Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, Team NTU 3D-Printed Car brought home the Communications and Safety awards. They also shared the Vehicle Design award with Team NSTRU Eco-Racing from Nakhon Si Thammarat Rajabhat University, Thailand. 

Team NTU 3D-Printed Car used 150 3D-printed parts to build the body of their car. Ahmad Ibrahim bin Mohammad Taha from the team said: “We began this project as a test-bed to show that 3D printing can be applied to large-scale creations, and we are glad that we have also inspired other teams at the competition to do the same.”

Team Nanyang E-Drive received the Technical Innovation award for a unique battery fire suppression system. It uses CO2 to prevent the battery from igniting if it overheats. 

This year also marked the third edition of the Shell Powering Progress Together Forum at Shell Eco-marathon Asia, where 250 thought leaders, young talents and representatives around Asia Pacific discussed challenges and potential solutions surrounding global energy, water and food resources. 


More In Shell Eco-Marathon Asia

Results and awards

View the latest Shell Eco-marathon Asia results and list of winners for On-track and Off-track Awards.

For Asia participants

Click here to find out more about the Shell Eco-marathon Asia 2020 Programme