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Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE Teams Arrive at Michigan International Speedway for Start of On-Track Testing

April 26, 2010

Vehicles From Around the Globe Begin Performance Testing Today in Pursuit of the Multimillion Dollar Cash Prize for Super Fuel Efficient Cars

**Celebratory Kickoff Event Planned at Michigan State Capitol on Thursday, April 29**

BROOKLYN, Mich., April 26 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Today, 28 teams, representing 36 super fuel efficient vehicles from across the globe will begin arriving at Michigan International Speedway (MIS) in Brooklyn, MI to officially start on-track performance testing for the Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE, a multi-million dollar competition designed to inspire a new generation of viable, production-capable, and super fuel-efficient vehicles that exceed 100 MPGe (miles per gallon or its energy equivalent).

Established automakers, start-ups, universities, inventors, and even a high school are among the diverse groups of teams representing 14 U.S. states and nine countries. These teams are now one step closer to their share of the $10 million prize purse, to be awarded this September to those that survive the rigorous multi-stage competition.

This week’s events at MIS kickoff the first of three on-track performance testing stages — Shakedown, Knockout Qualifying, and Finals — each aimed at evaluating the efficiency, safety, and performance of competition vehicles under real world conditions. At the completion of the Finals Stage on July 30, surviving vehicles move on to Argonne National Laboratory outside of Chicago, IL for three weeks of Validation Testing before the competition winners are announced this September.

The Shakedown Stage, scheduled for April 26-May 7, is an un-scored stage in which competition officials will conduct safety checks and inspections on competition vehicles, followed by a series of on-track challenges designed to allow teams an opportunity to test their vehicles without fear of penalty, shake out problem areas, and ready their vehicles for the Knockout Qualifying Stage that follows.

While in Michigan, the competition will offer several opportunities for the public and media to see the vehicles and meet the competing teams. Public days are scheduled for June 25 and July 23 as well as an Open House event at MIS to be announced next month. Several media days are also scheduled throughout the competition. The public can also follow the progress of competing teams online at www.progressiveautoxprize.org where interactive updates, photos, and videos from MIS will be available throughout the competition.

Winners will be selected from two classes: Mainstream and Alternative. The following is a complete list of the 28 Qualified Teams, along with the class in which they will compete and their fuel type. Note that some teams are entering vehicles in each class. For more information on these teams, please visit www.progressiveautoxprize.org.


    Mainstream Class Teams:
    Mainstream Class vehicles must carry four or more passengers, have
     four or more wheels, and offer a 200-mile range.
    American HyPower, Centennial, Colorado (Gasoline, Hydrogen)
    APET-X, Hong Kong, China (Electric)
    BITW Technologies, Palmyra, Indiana (Biodiesel)
    Cornell 100+ MPG Team, Ithaca, New York (Biodiesel)
    Edison2, Charlottesville, Virginia (E85)
    Enginer, Troy, Michigan (Gasoline + Steam)
    Envera, Mill Valley, California (Gasoline)
    Global-E, Mandeville, Louisiana (Gasoline & Electric)
    Illuminati Motor Works, Virden, Illinois (Electric)
    Liberty Motors Group, Botkins, Ohio (Gasoline)
    Team FourSight, Morgantown, West Virginia (Biodiesel)
    West Philly Hybrid X (EVX), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Gasoline)
    WIKISPEED, Seattle, Washington (Gasoline)

    Alternative Class Teams:
    Alternative Class vehicles must carry two or more passengers and
     allow for a 100 mile range.
    amp, Blue Ash, Ohio (Electric)
    Aptera Motors, Vista, California (Electric)
    Edison2, Charlottesville, Virginia (E85)
    Envera, Mill Valley, California (Gasoline)
    FVT Racing, Maple Ridge, British Columbia, Canada (Gasoline)
    K-Way MOTUS, Turin, Italy (Gasoline)
    OptaMotive, San Jose, California (Electric)
    RaceAbout Association, Helsinki, Finland (Electric)
    Spira, Banglamung, Chonburi, Thailand (Gasoline)
    Tango (Commuter Cars), Spokane, Washington (Electric)
    Tata Motors Limited, Coventry, United Kingdom (Electric)
    Team EVI, Mooresville, North Carolina (Electric)
    Team EVX, Dallas, Texas (Electric)
    Team FourSight, Morgantown, West Virginia (Electric)
    TW4XP, Rosenthal, Germany (Electric)
    West Philly Hybrid X (EVX), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Biodiesel)
    Western Washington University, Bellingham, Washington (Gasoline)
    X-Tracer Team Switzerland, Uster, Switzerland (Electric)
    ZAP, Santa Rosa, California (Electric)

On Thursday, April 29, five competition vehicles — including amp (Blue Ash, Ohio), Aptera (Vista, California), Edison2 (Lynchburg, Virginia), Global-E (Mandeville, Louisiana), and ZAP (Santa Rosa, California) — will be showcased on the lawn of the Michigan State Capitol in a celebratory kickoff event hosted by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). MEDC is also serving as host of the Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE on-track testing this spring and summer at MIS. Media can request more information on the April 29 press event via email at progressiveautopress@xprize.org.

For more information about the Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE, please visit www.progressiveautoxprize.org or email progressiveautopress@xprize.org.

ABOUT THE PROGRESSIVE INSURANCE AUTOMOTIVE X PRIZE

The goal of the Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE is to inspire a new generation of viable, super fuel-efficient vehicles that offer more consumer choices. Ten million dollars in prizes will be awarded to the teams that win a stage competition for clean, production-capable vehicles that exceed 100 Miles per gallon or energy equivalent (MPGe). The Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE will place a major focus on efficiency, safety, affordability, and the environment. It is about developing real, production-capable cars that consumers will want to buy, not science projects or concept cars. This progress is needed because today’s oil consumption is unsustainable and because automotive emissions significantly contribute to global warming and climate change. For more information about the Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE, please visit www.progressiveautoxprize.org or email progressiveautopress@xprize.org.

ABOUT PROGRESSIVE:

Progressive, founded in 1937, is one of the country’s largest auto insurance groups and a leading insurer of motorcycles, recreation vehicles, boats, and commercial vehicles. The Company offers competitive rates and innovative products and services that meet drivers’ needs throughout their lifetimes as well as 24/7 online and in-person customer and claims service. One of Progressive’s Core Values is Excellence. To the Company’s nearly 25,000 people, it simply means seeking constant improvement. Over time, this has meant introducing revolutionary ideas that make car insurance easier to shop for, buy and use. It’s this same innovative spirit that’s behind the Company’s sponsorship of the Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE. The Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE will inspire innovation that will produce more fuel efficient vehicle choices, helping to make a difference in people’s lives. Progressive’s products and services are available locally through more than 30,000 independent insurance agencies in the U.S., online at http://www.progressive.com, and by phone at 1-800-PROGRESSIVE (1-800-776-4737).

ABOUT THE X PRIZE FOUNDATION

The X PRIZE Foundation is an educational nonprofit prize institute whose mission is to create radical breakthroughs for the benefit of humanity. In 2004, the Foundation captured world headlines when Burt Rutan, backed by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, built and flew the world’s first private vehicle to space to win the $10 million Ansari X PRIZE. The Foundation has since launched the $10 million Archon X PRIZE for Genomics, the $30 million Google Lunar X PRIZE, and the $10 million Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE. The Foundation is creating and conducting competitions in four prize groups: Exploration (Space and Oceans), Life Sciences, Energy & Environment, and Education & Global Development. The Foundation is widely recognized as the leader in fostering innovation through competition. For more information, please visit www.xprize.org.

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Eric Cahill

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SOURCE Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE


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