The Blue Devil Motorsports team from Lawrence Technological University ranked 10th out of 28 teams in the 37th annual SAE Supermileage competition, held June 9-10 at the Eaton Proving Ground in Marshall, Mich.
That’s an improvement from the 2015 competition, when LTU finished 13th and claimed the “Best Newcomer Performance Award.”
No longer a newcomer, LTU’s vehicle, Beta, successfully completed the six-lap run with a fuel consumption rate of 226 miles per gallon. LTU was not able to get a second run to improve fuel economy performance because many teams passed technical inspection at the last minute during the competition, and before LTU could get in that second run, competition authorities closed the track for the day. The team competed with the same vehicle in the Shell Eco-Marathon in April in Detroit and achieved 319 miles per gallon.
Lawrence Tech did better than top 10 in the design competition, a combination of scores for its written and oral presentations to judges, finishing with 365 points, good for fourth place.
The Supermileage team, captained by senior Mechanical Engineering major Zack Rogers of Westland, thanked LTU’s College of Engineering and its A. Leon Linton Department of Mechanical Engineering for its support throughout the year as well as major sponsors Ford Motor Co., Varroc Lighting, ElectroJet and DENSO. Team members said they look forward to improving their performance in 2017.
Above, the Supermileage team poses with Beta. Below, Gregory Nickol of Macomb Township, a junior Mechanical Engineering major, gets ready to drive LTU’s SAE Supermileage competition car, Beta, as SAE judges look on.