SAE Supermileage Competition Celebrates 25 Years With 2004 Western Michigan Event

Warrendale, PA (June 1, 2004) - With gas prices skyrocketing to record levels, fuel conservation has become a key concern for adventure-seeking motorists this summer. As vacationers across the country seek cost-effective travel plans to gain the most mileage for their dollar, future engineers are going back to the drawing boards to build fuel-efficient vehicles for a competition in which the winner does not race for the fastest time, but for the highest number of miles per gallon. Against this backdrop, the Society of Automotive Engineers, International (SAE) is proud to host the 2004 Supermileage Competition in the Western Michigan town of Marshall, near Battle Creek, on June 11-12, marking the 25th Anniversary of the event.

The competition has been a part of SAE's Collegiate Design Series since 1980, when it began as a way to generate public awareness in the area of fuel economy after the energy crisis of the 1970s. Since then, fuel efficiency and fuel consumption have become vital buzzwords in automotive engineering.

The goal of the competition is simple yet challenging: teams must build a one-person vehicle based around a small, four-cycle engine to run through a specified course. Students have the opportunity to not only win the overall competition, but to set the world fuel economy record as well, all while gaining real world engineering experience in a competitive setting of advanced education and teamwork.

The event's corporate sponsors include Eaton Corporation and Briggs & Stratton Motorsports, who have generously provided their support for several years.

General schedule of events is as follows:

Friday, June 11: Registration and Practice - Eaton Corporation Proving Grounds
Registration for 2004 Supermileage participants runs from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. During the day, each of the vehicles will undergo a strict safety/design inspection before being granted permission to practice on the grounds.

Saturday, June 12: Competition - Eaton Corporation Proving Grounds
The grounds open at 8 a.m. for participants before the vehicle runs begin at 9 a.m., with the last run starting no later than 5 p.m. Media are encouraged to use this day as an opportunity to obtain photos and interviews with participants for coverage of the competition.

For additional information, schedules and maps for this event, please log onto http://www.sae.org/students/supermw.htm. Media may contact Keith Hancock, SAE PR, at 1-800-441-2919 or via e-mail at khancock@sae.org.