Formula SAE - Competition History 1981 - 1996 962509
The Formula SAE Student Design Competition was initiated at the University of Texas at Austin in 1981. The event was conceived as a road-racing counterpart to the established SAE Mini-Baja competition. The first Formula SAE event attracted four cars and the total involvement was approximately 100 people. Sixteen years later the event had grown to 76 vehicles and over 2000 involved participants. The event has become one of the premier engineering design events and has strong corporate support.
From 1981 through 1990 the event was hosted at the university level. In 1991 General Motors hosted the competition, followed by Ford in 1992, and Chrysler in 1993. Since 1994 the event has been jointly staged by a consortium with representatives from GM, Ford, Chrysler, and SAE acting as the steering team. This consortium effort has resulted in greater usage of the event as a place of professional recruitment of entry level engineers.
This paper presents a brief year-by-year history of the event, along with overall results and statistics for each year.