These 4 student-built cars were revving up at the Philly Auto Show
“High schoolers from Montco’s Methacton High School Electric Car Club, accompanied by professor Steve Savitz, showed off their battery-powered Lomax ride, which can be charged by an adjoining truck that uses solar panels. The truck was transformed into a hands-on classroom focused on alternative fuels.
Although the car was acquired and transformed to run with electric power in 1999, the project is ongoing for the students, who are in charge of maintenance (with help from local businesses and grants from the Methacton School District).”
A Montgomery County High School Gears Up For Philadelphia Auto Show
MONTGOMERY COUNTY (CBS) — A group of kids from a Montgomery County high school will be featured at the Philadelphia Auto Show, which opens later this week. The exhibit from the Methacton Electric Car Club is much more than just a car…
But the inside of the box truck is put to good use as well, a travelling display that will be on exhibit at the Auto Show, among the displays in the truck, a stationary bike hooked up to light bulbs to show how much more energy it takes to run an incandescent bulb compared to an LED.
As the automotive industry dramatically steps up its gasoline-electric hybrid efforts, the field will be wide open for engineering grads like Benjamin Sattler and Karthik Pillutla who are profoundly in tune with the technology.
The Methacton High School alumni and Penn State engineering students returned to their Worcester alma mater Thursday to hopefully trigger the same fervor in kids that they felt as members of the school’s Electric Car Club and teacher Steve Savitz’s environmental science class just a few years ago…
In what could be regarded as the ultimate show-and-tell, the men will be showcasing the 2013 Chevy Malibu that they helped convert to a hybridized version of the stock product.
Currently Sattler and Pillutla are transforming a 2016 Chevrolet Camaro into a hybrid electric beauty for EcoCAR 3, a four-year competition organized by Argonne National Labs and sponsored by General Motors and the Department of Energy.
“Obviously we’ll be talking about the car, but it’s really about getting the kids excited about these fields,” said Sattler, who was also joined by Pillutla for a visit to Arcola Middle School this week.
“The middle school was a little more about the STEM program and the science and technology opportunities that are available at both the high school level and college level. For the environmental class at Methacton it’s more about why the automotive industry is transitioning to hybrid vehicles and some of the challenges it faces.”
Methacton Electric Car Club was featured in Sunday’s Philadelphia Inquirer Article: (1/15/2017)
Headed for Philly Auto Show, Montco students get a charge out of electric cars
“With an eagerly awaited affordable Tesla on the way, 2017 may be the tipping point for an electric car revolution that seriously challenges the gas-guzzling status quo. Methacton High School, though, was way out in front of it, starting in 2002 when a local businessman donated a green, three-wheeled, plug-in novelty called a Lomax.
With that, the Montgomery County school launched the Electric Car Club. It now has two vehicles, plus a newly renovated, vegetable-oil-powered truck that uses solar energy to charge the Lomax. Bought for $400 on Craigslist, the former Tastykake truck is not only a standardbearer for renewable fuels but also is kitted out with fun exhibits to serve as a mobile classroom.
As one of the few remaining high school clubs of its kind in the region, the group has been asked to exhibit its vehicles – including a solar-powered Ford Ranger – at the Philadelphia Auto Show, from Jan. 28 to Feb. 5 at the Convention Center.”
On April 22, 2016, the Methacton Electric Car Club went to the Temple Ambler Campus to present the Lorax (the club’s electric car) to elementary school kids. In the process, ECC explained how electric cars work and helped raise environmental awareness.
The Methacton Electric Car Club just attended the awards ceremony for the three day competition at the Hydrogen Energy Research Center at Penn State University. Dr. Joel Anstrom, one of the research directors, is giving club members Megan Rothgeb and Kim Nguyen an award for the clubs 3rd place finish at “21st Century Automotive Challenge”. Thirteen built or manufactured cars competed at range, carbon dioxide emissions, efficiency, cargo capacity and auto cross. Methacton’s electric car the “lorax”, drove for 74 miles in one charge with an efficiency of averaging 131 MPGe (miles per gallon equivalency) taking 3rd place in the competition.