IMAGE: MSU solar racecar

The Motor City is living up to its nickname with the unveiling of the latest and greatest at the North American International Auto Show.

It’s not just about sleek and shiny cars, but also brand-new, innovative technology changing the way of driving forever.

“The goal of this is to design, build and then race a formula-style racecar every year,” said Curtis Lynn, with the Michigan State Formula Racing team.

That’s exactly what Michigan State engineering students did over the summer. They raced their car against colleges from all across the United States.

Not one inch of the car was engineered by professionals.

About 25 students built the car, which is tricked out with features including wings in the front and the back for aerodynamics. It is also made out of carbon fiber to make it light.

“It’s really good real-world, hands-on experience,” Lynn said.

While the Michigan State Formula Racing Team’s success involves speed, students on the Michigan State Solar Racing Team have a different goal.

“It’s really to prove that there are different, that there’s alternative modes of transportation using electricity, solar power, something that’s more renewable,” said Diego Prakash, with the Michigan State Solar Racing Team.

Their car is covered in solar panels and converts the sun’s energy into power as the team races for distance.

The team is working on a new car that looks a little less like a boat and more like on you would see on the road.

“So we’re gonna have solar panels all along the roof and cover as much area of the car as possible,” said Julia O’Mara, with the Michigan State Solar Racing Team.

The Michigan State Solar Racing Team hopes to have its newest vehicle tested on a testing track this spring.

Copyright 2019 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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