Progessive Aims to Drive Automotive Innovation with X PRIZE Competition

The long-awaited beginnings of a major sea change in automobile design and manufacturing continues.
Progressive Insurance yesterday released the official list of teams that will compete for its Automotive X PRIZE. One hundred eleven registered teams from 25 U.S. states and 11 countries will field 136 vehicles using 14 different fuel sources and compete for a share of a $10 million prize purse.
Looking to inspire and foster development of a new generation of practically feasible “super fuel-efficient vehicles,” registered teams will now move through a design judging phase based on data submission packages they’ve submitted. In addition to fuel efficiency, entries will be judged on affordability, safety, and environmental impact.
*Image courtesy of Myers Motors, Ohio

The Flag Is Up
Those that pass the design phase will move on to the performance testing phase and participate in a series of competitions that are slated to begin as early as May 2010. The exact date the competitions start, how many venues there will and their geographic distribution will be determined prior to July this year, Progressive announced.
The purse money will be awarded to teams that “win a rigorous long-distance stage competition and can exceed 100 MPG equivalent fuel economy.” Winners will be selected from two classes–Mainstream and Alternative– in a Competition Division.
“We are thrilled with the wide variety of teams and technologies from around the world that are joining us in this competition,” chairman and CEO of the X Prize Foundation Dr. Peter H. Diamandis stated in a media release.
“Being accepted as a Registered Team is a major milestone. This is also an exciting step for the Foundation as we move closer to our goal of inspiring a new generation of real, clean, safe and super fuel-efficient vehicles.”

An independent journalist, researcher and writer, my work roams across the nexus where ecology, technology, political economy and sociology intersect and overlap. The lifelong quest for knowledge of the world and self -- not to mention gainful employment -- has led me near and far afield, from Europe, across the Asia-Pacific, Middle East and Africa and back home to the Americas. LinkedIn: andrew burger Google+: Andrew B Email:

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