Solar Car Racing Status Check #2


Tokai, who came 4th at WSC 2017, will race against Nuon at SASOL this year (photo: Anthony Dekker)

In further solar car racing news, preparations are continuing for the SASOL Solar Challenge in South Africa (September 22 to 30). Defending champions Nuon and Japanese team Tokai will attend this event, along with local teams, such as North-West University.


The Belgian car, Punch 2, which came 3rd at WSC 2017, will be challenging Twente at iESC this year (photo: Anthony Dekker)

Thirteen teams have registered so far for the 24 hour iLumen European Solar Challenge (iESC) in Belgium (September 19 to 23), and Twente will be defending their title there. I am maintaining an information page and teams list for this race. See also the official iESC social media at  


Western Sydney’s car, Unlimited 2.0, which came 6th at WSC 2017, will race at ASC this year (photo: Anthony Dekker)

Thirty-two teams have registered for the American Solar Challenge (ASC) in July. Scrutineering for this race begins on July 6, track racing on July 10, and the road race runs from July 14 to July 22. I am maintaining a detailed information page and teams list for this race too.


Missouri’s new car, Independence, was unveiled on 18 April (picture credit)

Five teams are attending with cars that raced at WSC 2017 (including one Australian team), although these cars will require adjustment to satisfy ASC rules. Seven other teams had existing cars (including one Russian team). The remaining teams have been building new cars.


Poly Montreal’s new car, Esteban 9, was unveiled on 23 April (picture credit)

Recently unveiled cars for the ASC include Missouri S&T (18 April), Poly Montreal / Esteban (23 April), and Georgia Tech (24 April). There are 17 cars still to be unveiled.


Georgia Tech’s new car, SR-2, was unveiled on 24 April (picture credit)


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Solar Car Racing Status Check

In solar car racing news, preparations are beginning for the SASOL Solar Challenge in South Africa (September 22 to 30). It seems that both Nuon and Tokai will attend this event, along with local teams.


Nuon at WSC 2017 (photo: Anthony Dekker)

Thirteen teams have registered so far for the 24 hour iLumen European Solar Challenge in Belgium (September 19 to 23), and Twente will be defending their title there. I am maintaining an information page and teams list for this race. See also the official iESC social media at  


Twente at WSC 2017 (photo: Anthony Dekker)

The American Solar Challenge is a lot closer than those two races, with scrutineering beginning on July 6, track racing on July 10, and the road race running from July 14 to July 22. I am maintaining a detailed information page and teams list for this race. At last count, 34 teams were registered, with Anderson, UCSD, Principia, UC Irvine, Phoenix, and UT Austin having, sadly, dropped out.

Six teams are attending with cars that raced at WSC 2017, although these cars will require adjustment to satisfy ASC rules (Michigan, Western Sydney, Principia, and Illini, plus the Cruisers PrISUm and Minnesota). Six other teams are attending with cars that previously raced at ASC.


PrISUm at WSC 2017 (photo: Anthony Dekker)

Twenty-two other teams are frantically building cars for ASC. Car unveils that have been announced include team 42 (Missouri) on 18 April, team 55 (Esteban) on 23 April, team 101 (Eclipse) in mid May, team 828 (AppState) in mid June, and team 65 (Calgary) on 16 June.


Missouri’s unfinished car (picture credit)

See my detailed information page and teams list for this race for more information and for social media links. I will continue to update that page as news comes in.


Upcoming solar car races for 2018


photo: Anthony Dekker

I am aware of four major solar car races this year (not including the Japanese races):


photo: SASOL Solar Challenge


Sasol Solar Challenge Results

I have somewhat neglected the Sasol Solar Challenge in South Africa, which has been running for the past few days, but here are the official results, plus a photo of the winning team. Special congratulations also go to Lodz Solar Team – the best (and only!) Cruiser in the race – and to the Maragon Solar Eagles, a high school team that did very well. Distances travelled include optional “loops” driven by the teams at selected locations.


Sasol Solar Challenge Update #2

Here are the 14 solar car teams that will be competing in the Sasol Solar Challenge in South Africa this year, with clickable social media links. The event will run from September 24 to October 2 (thus overlapping with the ESC), with scrutineering beginning on September 20. The Sasol Solar Challenge has had a very poor internet presence, and Google has been reporting their website as hacked, but you can follow the race on Facebook and on Twitter.

TR  Anadolu Solar Team 

This team came 19th in the Challenger class at WSC 2015. Their car has been shipped to South Africa. They are one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

ZA  German School in Johannesburg (DSJ) 

This is a local team. They are one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

HU  Kecskemét College GAMF (Megalux) 

This team came 7th in the Challenger class at WSC 2015. Their car has been shipped to South Africa. They are one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

PL  Lodz Solar Team 

This team competed in the Cruiser class at WSC 2015. Their car has been shipped to South Africa. They are the only entry in the Cruiser class for this race.

ZA  Mangosuthu University of Technology (MUT) Solar Team

This is a local team. They are one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

ZA  Maragon Solar Eagles 

This is a local team. They are one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

Near East University Solar Car Team

This team is one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

ZA  North West University 

This team came 11th in the Challenger class at WSC 2015. They are a local team, and are one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

NL  Nuon Solar Team 

This team came 1st in the Challenger class at WSC 2015. Nuon left for South Africa a month before the race, in spite of a nasty crash just before leaving. They are one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

ZA  PI 21 Solar Team

This is a local team. They are one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

JP  Tokai University 

This team came 7th in the 2015 Abu Dhabi Solar Challenge, and 3rd in the Challenger class at WSC 2015. They are one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

ZA  Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) Solar Car 

This is a local team. They are one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

ZA  UJ Solar Car 

This is a local team. They are one of 12 entries in the Challenger class for this race.

ZA  ZingCO Electric Vehicle

This is a local team. They are the only entry in the Sustainability class for this race.

The map below shows the race route. To score a longer distance, teams can also drive loops at Sasolburg, Deneysville, Winburg, Theunissen, Edenburg, Reddersburg, Jansenville, Klipplaat, Humansdorp, Mossel Bay, Caledon and Genadendal.

This post last updated 22:41 on 31 August 2016 AEST


Upcoming solar-car races


The Michigan team in Australia in 2015 (my photo)

American Solar Challenge (USA)

Registration & Scrutineering begin: 22 July 2016
Qualifying Track Race (FSGP 2016) begins: 26 July 2016
Start of ASC Stage 1: 30 July 2016
Award Ceremony: 6 August 2016

Sasol Solar Challenge (South Africa)

Static scrutineering commences: 20 September 2016
Start in Pretoria: 24 September 2016
Finish in Cape Town: 1 October 2016
Award Ceremony: 2 October 2016

World Solar Challenge (Australia)

8–15 October 2017


Sasol Solar Challenge Update

The Sasol Solar Challenge in South Africa ( ) is still calling on solar car teams to sign up before the May 1 deadline, but here is my updated list of teams who say they are attending:

Nuon Solar Team (Netherlands)

Nuon won the 2014 Sasol Solar Challenge and the 2015 World Solar Challenge. They are the clear favourites for this year’s event.


Nuon’s Nuna7S in South Africa in 2014 (photo: Nuon Solar Team)

Tokai (Japan)

It seems that Tokai will be back in South Africa this year, to challenge Nuon for first place.


The Tokai team in Australia in 2015 (my photo)

North-West University (South Africa)

NWU came 11th in the the 2015 World Solar Challenge, ahead of South African rivals UKZN. They should do well on home turf this year.


NWU’s Sirius X25 in Australia in 2015 (my photo)

Lodz Solar Team (Poland)

The team from Lodz will, I understand, be taking their lovely Eagle One cruiser to South Africa this year.


Eagle One in Australia in 2015 (my photo)

Sheffield Hallam University (UK)

This seems to be a new team, who are building an old-school symmetrical 4-wheel car.

Anadolu Solar Team (Turkey)

Anadolu were in the top 20 at WSC15. If I understand their (Tukish) web page correctly, they are off to South Africa as well.

Not competing this year are UKZN.

Update: Google is reporting the Sasol Solar Challenge website as potentially hacked (and a quick glance at the page HTML makes it clear why), so exercise more than usual caution. Trend Micro, scanurl.net, and urlvoid.com report no major concerns, but the website is of limited value anyway, being mostly about the 2014 race.