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WMG Sends Race Car You Can Grow To Eden Project

Ben Wood and racing car  Ben Wood and racing car


If you thought motor-racing was all about petrol-heads and champagne, WMG students at the University of Warwick will make you think again.

Eco One is an environmentally-friendly race car with a difference: its shell is made from hemp, the tyres made from potatoes and the brake pads made from cashew nut shells. It also runs entirely on bio-fuels and bio-lubricants.

But its green credentials don’t hold it back on the track. Designed originally with a top speed of 125mph, project manager Ben Wood has ‘tweaked’ the original Formula Student engine and claims he can achieve up to 150mph – given a long straight and a tailwind.

Ben, studying for his Engineering Doctorate at WMG, the global innovation specialists based at the University of Warwick, said: “Almost everything on the car can be made out of biodegradable or recyclable materials. All the plastic components can be made from plants and, although the chassis has to be made from steel for strength, steel is a very recyclable material.

“We already have the shell, brake pads, fuel and tyres sorted. My aim is to end up with a race car that’s 95 per cent biodegradable or recyclable. If we can build a high-performance car that can virtually be grown from seed, just imagine what’s possible for the average family car.”

Eco One is getting its first public outing at the Sexy Green Car Show at the Eden Project where, from 30 March to 15 April, it will rub shoulders with green offerings from the biggest names in the motor industry worldwide.

Notes for editors:

·         WMG, based at the University of Warwick, is a provider of innovative solutions to industry, supporting some of the most advanced research, development and training projects in the world.

·         The press launch for the Sexy Green Car Show is on 29 March, contact the Eden Project for more information:

·         Ben Wood and senior WMG researchers who dreamed up the concept of Eco One, Dr Steve Maggs and Dr Kerry Kirwan, will be at the Eden Project and available to speak to journalists from 29 to 31 March.

·         Supporters of the project: Warwick Innovative Manufacturing Centre, the University of Exeter, Fuchs, EcoCats, Goodyear, Hemcore, and the Department of Chemistry at the University of Warwick.

·         Pictures available: go to Eco One 1 and Eco One 2 or click on the thumbnail pictures above.

For media enquiries, please call Zoë Howard on 02476 524721 or 07824 540845


Peter Dunn,
Press and Media Relations Manager
Communications Office, University House,
University of Warwick, Coventry, CV4 8UW, United Kingdom   
Tel: +44 (0)24 76 523708
Mobile/Cell:  +44 (0)7767 655860

22nd March 2007



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