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Ohio State EcoCar Team to Transform Camaro into 60-mpg Hybrid

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The 2016 Chevrolet Camaro SS features a• 6.2-liter V8 direct injection engine good for 455 horsepower

2016 Chevrolet Camaro SS
Photo: © General Motors

For the past two years, the EcoCar program has posed a timely, engaging challenge to 16 universities in the US and Canada: take a given car and modify it to achieve the most fuel economy possible while still retaining performance. The competitions began with a Saturn VUE SUV being sent to each university, repeated last year with a Chevrolet Malibu.

So, what car will these universities be modifying this year? The Chevrolet Camaro 2LT, equipped with a 3.6-liter V6 engine and producing 225 hp and 284 lb-ft of torque while offering 19 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway.

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Ohio State’s EcoCar team, which has taken home the win for the past two years, plans to turn the growling Camaro into a plug-in hybrid, making the car a nearly-silent sports car. It’s anticipated to have the equivalent of 60 mpg, an electric range of 40 miles, and a range extending engine running on E85 gasoline.

“We’re essentially trying to build a Volt in three months with a volunteer workforce,” said Shawn Midlam-Mohler, an engineering professor and the team’s faculty adviser, to The Columbus Dispatch. “That’s pretty aggressive.”

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At least the competition will fit in with the vehicle styling, then. The competition will begin late this spring, with winners announced in June.

News Source: The Columbus Dispatch