The University of Waterloo Alternative Fuels Team (UWAFT) is a student team comprised of both graduate and undergraduate students from the University of Waterloo. UWAFT’s primary mandate is to research, design and implement advanced vehicle technologies into existing production vehicles to reduce fuel consumption, well-to-wheel greenhouse gas emissions and criteria tailpipe while maintaining or exceeding vehicle performance, safety and consumer acceptability. In addition to technical research and development, UWAFT actively educates the public about alternative fuels and hybrid vehicle technologies via public outreach events and social media.
UWAFT has been competing in Advanced Vehicle Technology Competitions since 1997 and has won a variety of technical, outreach and business awards during this time.
For EcoCAR 2, UWAFT has selected an E85 Series Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle architecture. An 18.9 kWh A123 battery will power two TM4 Motors for over 260 horsepower to the wheels. The battery can be recharged using a standard wall outlet. If the battery is not charged or depleted, the vehicle turns into a hybrid with a 2.4L General Motors-donated engine providing power to a generator. This will provided an extend rage, supplementing the battery for trips longer than 60 km. These vehicle specifications were selected by using real-world driving habits and consumer feedback. By designing a vehicle based on drivers’ needs, UWAFT hopes to push green vehicle technology into the mainstream automotive market.