Imagine this: you are riding to your holiday destination by car, you are driving but you don’t have to stop at a gas station. To be more precise: you don’t even have a fuel tank. Nice and cheap, right? This makes sense when we’re talking about Red One, but ‘consumers’ have to wait to be able to say the same. This leads us to the following question:  when can we experience these technologies in our own cars?

Red One – Challenger Class

Not if, but ‘when?’
The question is not whether fossil fuel will (partly) disappear as an energy source for cars, but ‘when’. The combination of fossil fuel and electricity found its way in the car industry, hybrid cars are getting more common. The showpiece (for some people) of fully-electric cars, is the Tesla.

Stella (Solar Team Eindhoven) - Cruiser Class

Stella (Solar Team Eindhoven) – Cruiser Class

Self-sufficient cars 
Let’s take this principle to the next level: a car that can generate its own energy and is self-sufficient, just like Red One. Our solar car was built for speed and maximum performance. The seating  isn’t very comfortable and luxurious. Fast, aerodynamic and state of the art, but not really suitable as an everyday car. However, solar cars competing in the Cruiser Class have a lot in common with family cars. This class illustrates how solar energy could possibly be used in the car industry.

Which factors hold back?
It’s obviously hard to predict when these technologies will be implemented for family cars. Multiple factors play a role in this process: production costs of these technologies, applicability, and technical developments. The race and solar cars shed light on sustainable energy  as an energy source for innovative passenger traffic.

Updates Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2015
Curious about the current situation of Solar Team Twente? Take a look at this page for updates