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EcoCAR EV Challenge’s Year Two Competition celebrates 13 teams’ ‘immediate impact’

Ready. Set. Celebrate! Students, faculty, sponsors, and organizers are gathering in Yuma, Ariz. at the General Motors Desert Proving Ground for the EcoCAR EV Challenge Year Two Competition.

This competition brings together the 13 teams who each embarked on their own journey to engineer a next generation battery electric vehicle that utilizes automation and vehicle-to-everything connectivity to implement energy efficient and customer-pleasing features, while meeting the decarbonization needs of the automotive industry.

In fall of 2023, the teams received their 2023 Cadillac LYRIQ from General Motors. Students then completed all baseline testing and subsystem designs and began the process of disassembly and integration. Earlier this spring, all vehicles underwent Vehicle Technical Inspections by competition organizers in preparation of the Year 2 Competition.

During stage one of the competition, each team’s LYRIQ will undergo additional vehicle technical inspections that will evaluate the safety and quality of the team’s vehicle integration and functionality. Teams will then put their vehicles through a series of dynamic events at the GM proving ground. Dynamic events will include On-Road Safety Evaluation, Acceleration, Longitudinal Control testing, as well as Endurance and Energy Consumption.

According to Jesse Alley, senior program manager forthe EcoCAR EV Challenge, year two of the challenge, also known as the build year, is the most challenging portion of the four-year series.

Modifying and re-integrating a cyber-secure vehicle like the LYRIQ is a tremendous challenge, according to Alley, but also a terrific learning opportunity for the students.

“For most of these students, this is their first experience working with automotive-grade components and technology,” Alley said. “This year has had its challenges, both expected and unforeseen, but the teams now get to see how they measure up against all the other schools at a world-class facility like GM’s DPG.”


Once vehicle testing concludes in Yuma, EcoCAR teams will head  to Phoenix, Ariz. for stage two of the competition, where they’ll give static presentations to showcase all of their hard work and efforts to sponsors and judges across each of the key the program areas; this includes i engineering, project management, communications and equity in mobility. The competition special events will feature a Sponsor Social Networking and Recruitment event as well as team and faculty celebrations.

The competition finale held May 22, will also include a Sponsor Social Networking and Recruiting event where sponsors will have the opportunity to recruit the competition’s top talent. The day will conclude with the year Awards Ceremony, where teams will take home hardware and more than $100K in prize money, and a year-two winner will also be crowned.

“No matter the results of the year two competition, one outcome is clear: this batch of EcoCAR students has developed the skills and experience to make an immediate impact when they move on to industry,” Alley said.

Be sure to follow along on EcoCAR’s social media for competition updates.

To learn more about year two of the competition, visit Year 2 Competition.