It would seem the race is on to be the first comany to come up with an affordable vehicle that can achieve 100mpg fuel economy and emit less than 200 grams of greenhouse gases per mile. The bar has been set by the X Prize Foundation and they have ponied up a prize of $10 million dollars for the winner. One of the main stipulations is that the vehicle must be affordable to the general public. It's good to see that they realized that a $400,000 green vehicle doesn't do anybody any good if the average joe can't afford to buy one.
It would appear that the competition is heating up and there are a wide range of entries that will make this an interesting competition to watch.
While many of the competitors are focusing on hybrid-electric designs, there are many that are exploring improvements to existing diesel technologies that burn far cleaner than todays inefficient diesel engines. EcoMotors and Transonic are two companies who may soon be teaming up if they are not already. Both companies are working on 100mpg diesel tecnology, while being funded by the same venture capitalists.
With any luck, the automotive industry will be watching this competition closely to bring some of the technology that emerges to the consumer. Even the people that don't win could provide significant innovation that would lead to cleaner, greener vehicles.
I will certainly be watchinhg this competition to see what develops from it...
Company promises 100 mpg engine CNET News.com