Now that we’re a few months into 2014, many EcoCAR 2 team members have begun to feel the pressure of the upcoming Year Three Competition in June. The CSULA team is hard at work getting their vehicle ready for the next milestone: dynamometer testing. As they continue to update their controls algorithms for the rear powertrain, the team’s mechanical and electrical engineers are examining every little detail so they can have a safe and reliable vehicle. One of their main projects is building jigs and mockups of the ducting necessary to cool down both the energy storage system (ESS) and Magna motor.
At the same time, CSULA’s engineering and business departments are working together to create connections with aftermarket companies to purchase rims and tires. By replacing the rims and getting low resistance tires, the team hopes to not only improve in fuel economy but also lower the overall weight of the vehicle by 20 pounds. The team hopes that this weight reduction, in conjunction with over 20 pounds of electrical tape and wiring removed from the vehicle, a lighter aluminum fuel tank and other changes, will offset the added weight of the vehicle’s extra motor.