The construction of a plug-in electrical race vehicle is presented in the paper.
The vehicle is a prototype developed to be used for the Shell Eco-Marathon (SEM) competition. The main aim of SEM is to minimize fuel consumption. According to the technical regulations and the overall dimensions, the layout of the vehicle has been estimated in order to reduce the mass and the aerodynamic resistance of the vehicle. A high performance aerodynamic shape has been developed starting from the “Morelli’s shape” which has been further optimized to reduce the aerodynamic drag. A CFD analysis has been completed to refine the vehicle shape and to reach the final body geometry. To reduce the frontal area the wheels have been connected to the main body by using CFRP wing beams and both suspension system and powertrain, have been integrated into the wheels. A highly efficient powertrain has been developed and an electronic differential has been implemented. All the subsystems have been optimized both to reduce the motion resistance of the vehicle and to maximize the efficiency.
A numerical model of the vehicle has been developed in order to aid the design and to simulate the race strategy on different competition tracks. The model has been validated by considering data acquired during the race.