In 2009, Kecskemét College’s GAMF team in Hungary set out to develop an energy-efficient prototype vehicle. Our aim was to cover 1,000 kilometers consuming 1 liter of gasoline (equivalent to 2,352 mpg). That’s why the vehicle’s name is Megameter = 1,000 km. We took the Megameter III to Rotterdam for Shell Eco-marathon last year, and it covered 2,696 km/liter (6,341 mpg) during that international competition for fuel-efficiency.
This year, we built a new vehicle, Megameter IV, that could be amongst the most energy-efficient race cars in the world (see our website). To start, we completed the team and determined the main project lines: bodywork, engine, drive train, undercarriage, electronics; and managerial work to find sponsors and supporters, marketing, media etc.
Many problems can occur during the designing and constructing of a self-made vehicle, but at the same time, these problems give us challenges that stimulate us to think of innovative solutions.
Our team is supported by Kecskemét College’s GAMF (College of Mechanical Engineering and Automation) faculty with a students’ workshop where we can work on the desired vehicle concept. We have other supporters who undertake some of the manufacturing works. Our team has three enthusiastic teachers. They help if we have some problems.
It is important to know the direction humanity is headed in the field of vehicle development. We are curious about the designs and propulsions of futuristic cars, and we want to realize our concepts. That’s why we participate in Eco-marathon competitions.
We chose to compete in prototype gasoline category because gasoline is the most general fuel used in vehicles nowadays. We considered other categories also, but after analyzing the problem, we certainly knew that the internal combustion gasoline engine is the most energy-efficient and environmentally friendly engine in the near future. Why?
The main concern of the 21st century is the growth of CO2 emissions. Taking into account the whole process, a vehicle having a hydrogen fuel cell or battery emits more CO2 than a sophisticated gasoline engine. They might be more economical when running on the road, but the manufacturing of fuel cells or batteries and the production of their fuels take more energy and CO2 emission than that of the good old gasoline engines. And besides, well trained engineers can reduce gasoline consumption.
See video from our process below: