With the move towards ‘Think Blue’, Volkswagen Group South Africa is leading the charge by supporting the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University’s (NMMU) dream of racing a solar car in the 3rd South African Solar Challenge on 18 – 29 September 2012.
The solar car, which has been named ‘Photon’ was unveiled today, 3 September 2012 at NMMU in Port Elizabeth by Tom du Plessis, Director for Production at Volkswagen Group South Africa. ‘Photon’ will be competing against a number of international teams from countries such as Japan and Netherlands.
In May 2011, Volkswagen made a substantial financial and technical contribution towards establishment of the project, which has culminated in the VWSA-NMMU Solar Car team participating in this bi-annual event.
“Volkswagenis excited to be involved in such a unique project with the NMMU engineering students. Renewable energy will play a significant role in the future of the automotive industry and by embarking on such a project, the students will gain valuable knowledge that they can bring into the engineering field,” saidDu Plessis.
Volkswagen has also provided the team with three vehicles – Crafter, T5 Kombi and Caddy – which will be used as support vehicles during the two week racethat will cover over 5 000km.
Clive Hands, project leader of the VWSA-NMMU Solar Car team, said: “Our team consists of both local and international students from multiple faculties studying at NMMU. They have all voluntarily participated in this exciting project since its inception in May last year.”
“The solar car has been designed to be a light