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FutureTruck wins third in a row

UW-Madison FutureTruck 2004

The UW-Madison FutureTruck competed in a number of tests at the national competition, including an off-road race. Photo courtesy of 2004 FutureTruck Competition. (large image)

The UW-Madison FutureTruck team won its third consecutive national championship, easily beating 14 other universities at the 2004 FutureTruck Competition held in Michigan. The competition was held from June 9 through Wednesday at the testing grounds of the Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, Michigan.

The UW-Madison team, composed of undergraduate students at the College of Engineering, scored 924 points out of a possible 1,000, easily outdistancing runner-up Penn State University, which finished with 802 points.

The competition pits teams of students who spend a year modifying a sport-utility vehicle supplied by Ford. The teams work to reduce fuel emissions and increase fuel economy, while maintaining the characteristics of an SUV — such as towing ability, safety, and storage — that consumers want. Teams also compete in off-road races, handling, braking, workmanship, acceleration, design and technical reports.

UW-Madison FutureTruck 2004

UW-Madison FutureTruck in a test of towing capability. Photo courtesy of 2004 FutureTruck Competition. (large image)

The UW-Madison team finished first in the categories of: on-road fuel efficiency, lowest greenhouse gas emissions, best consumer acceptability, and best oral presentation. The team also won third place for most innovative use of electronics.

Ford and the U.S. Department of Energy are the primary sponsors of the FutureTruck competition. Argonne National Laboratory, a DOE research and development facility, provides management, technical and logistical support at the competition. Fifteen other government and industry sponsors support the competition.