The University of Waterloo Alternative Fuels Team (UWAFT) was established in 1996 as one of only a few student design teams on campus. Originally located in a small garage in the university's physics building, a group of engineering students wanted to make a difference. They had a passion for cars, designing, building and driving them, but they also had awareness of environmental consequences. Realizing that one day, oil and gas will become scarce and that the vehicles we all use would have to adapt. Thus began the search for a viable alternative fuel that could power the cars of the 21st century.
They took on tough challenges in the form of "The Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition" (AVTC). The first of these competitions was the propane vehicle challenge from 1996-1997 where teams were tasked to build a vehicle that ran only on propane. Following this, UWAFT decided to pursue other competitions exploring a variety of new technologies. Our team saw these competitions as an opportunity to fulfill our goals while learning about cars and networking with industry professionals. We found them so valuable that we competed in almost every AVTC henceforth. They include the following:
- 1996-1997: Propane Vehicle Challenge
- 1996-1999: FutureCar
- 1997-1999: Ethanol Vehicle Challenge
- 1999-2004: FutureTruck
- 2004-2008: ChallengeX: Crossover to Sustainable Mobilty
- 2008-2011: EcoCAR: The NeXt Challenge
- 2011-2014: EcoCAR 2: Plugging In to the Future
We are now proud to be a part of EcoCAR 3!