The first ever running of the Royal Automobile Club’s Future Car Challenge took place last Saturday.
The event was billed as ‘a new motoring challenge for Electric, Hybrid and Low-Emission ICE vehicles to use the lowest energy on a 60 mile route from Madeira Drive, Brighton to Pall Mall and Regent Street, London’ – the reverse of the route used for the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run. AROnline caught up with the entrants at the halfway point in Crawley, West Sussex.
Gordon Murray was taking questions from all, including AROnline – when your Reporter asked ‘Midas, F1 or T25?’, Murray gave a wry smile and replied ‘The T25 – it’s the future.’
The MGF belonging to Neil Hutchinson was one of the few vehicles not to be entered by a manufacturer – EDF Energy did, though, kindly foot the entry fee for him and his wife. Neil had used a quarter of the charge available by the time he reached Crawley and his only worry seemed to be what to have for dinner at the RAC in Pall Mall – the MGF was giving sterling service and, as Neil pointed out, was ‘British built.’
Tata Motors sent two Engineers in the Birmingham-registered Indica EV – when questioned, the smiling pair replied it was running fine and getting many admiring glances from rival manufacturers.
Other manufacturer-backed cars included a Wolfsburg-plated Electric Golf, a well-tested devlopment Ampera (but wearing fresh Griffin badges…) and Nissan sent the Leaf, the last entry at No 64. Too tight lipped for AROnline though!
Finally, thanks to Karl of www.C5alive.co.uk for the laps in his Sinclair C5 – annoyingly for the manufacturers’ PR Departments, he seemed to be getting all the attention!