Georgia Tech has emerged the winner of the GM sponsored EcoCar Mobility Challenge – a collegiate engineering competition that tasked participants with improving the fuel efficiency of a 2019 Chevy Blazer crossover.
The EcoCar Mobility Challenge kicked off in 2018, with twelve U.S. and Canadian universities setting out to make their donated 2019 Chevy Blazer crossovers more fuel-efficient. The competition, which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy, GM, and MathWorks, required students to incorporate advanced, eco-friendly propulsion systems into the vehicle, along with SAE Level-2 autonomous driving technology and vehicle-to-vehicle connectivity. Teams were scored through various testing events ranging from energy consumption to acceleration and drive quality. Schools also participated in a recent 175-mile “Over the Road Event,” through the Arizona desert, which tested each vehicle’s thermal management, range, and overall durability.
Georgia Tech took home a $10,000 cash prize for winning the EcoCar Mobility challenge, which will be used to further support its advanced vehicle technology program. Details on the modifications made to the school’s 2019 Chevy Blazer crossover were not provided.
GM launched the next-generation of the EcoCar Mobility Challenge late last year – the EcoCar EV Challenge. This collegiate competition will be similar to the Mobility Challenge, but instead of using a 2019 Blazer, participating schools will be tasked with modifying a 2023 Cadillac Lyriq. Participating teams will each receive an identical 2023 Cadillac Lyriq model and will modify and improve the vehicle’s propulsion system and other components. Teams will then congregate in May 2026 and put the vehicles they’ve designed, developed and built to the test through a series of challenges.
In a statement, GM said the new EcoCar EV Challenge will challenge participants to develop “a next generation battery electric vehicle that utilizes automation and vehicle-to-everything (V2X) connectivity to implement energy efficient and customer-appealing features.” In addition, the competition will also challenge teams to “apply innovative solutions to address equity and electrification challenges in the future of mobility and implement advanced powertrain, charging, and thermal systems to use grid electricity intelligently.”