In 1977, Shell organized the first competition in Mallory Park, Ill. for outside teams. And in 1985, the first European Shell Eco-marathon was held in France. Following is a look a some of the more interesting designs over the past few years.
The cars line up for the 1985 competition in France.
This 1985 cigar-shaped vehicle doesn't look that much different from the ones that competed in the 2006 competition. The winner ran the equivalent of 680 kilometers on a liter of fuel or about 1,600 miles per gallon.
The 2006 winner only hit 2,885 kilometers per liter or 6,786 miles per gallon.
A team tried this design--balancing on two wheels and a ball in 2003. It hasn't been repeated.
This 1985 convertible that looks like a baby buggy failed to gain support.
It looks like a very young driver was used to keep the weight down for this vehicle from the Ext. Secundario team from Soito in the collegiate division. It didn't help much as the vehicle placed 86th.
This 2005 model from IFTS Charleville Mezieres looks like it would do quite well in a demolition derby--especially after it came in 100th place out of 127 vehicles.
Here's a 2002 car that looks like it was modeled after "Spy vs. Spy."
This design from 2003 appears to leave little room for the driver.
The tires make a big impression on the 2002 entry from the Clermont de l'Oise Optima team.
The big-wheel design was back in 2003.
This 2003 urban concept, an entry based on a real automobile, looks like a grown-up matchbox car.
A future on the road? At least the the boxy style of this 2005 Lycee Louis Delange lets the driver sit up.