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June 8, 2009
EcoCAR Challenge launches in Toronto
Today, Councillor Glenn DeBaeremaeker (Ward 38 Scarborough Centre) officially welcomed teams from 17 Canadian and American universities to Toronto at the opening of the EcoCAR Challenge - a week-long competition running from June 7 to 12 that challenges teams across North America to reduce the environmental impact of vehicles by designing and integrating leading-edge technology into a 2009 Saturn Vue.

“The City of Toronto is a leader in adopting green fleet technology and we’re pleased to welcome some of the brightest students in North America who are revolutionizing the traditional vehicle to reduce our carbon footprint,” said Councillor Glenn DeBaeremaeker. “I can’t think of a better way to drive environmental change than with some friendly competition, here at the EcoCAR Challenge, in a city that’s striving to be one of the greenest on the planet.”

The EcoCar Challenge was established by the United States Department of Energy (DOE) and General Motors (GM), and is being managed by Argonne National Laboratory. This competition allows students across North America an opportunity to work with leading edge automotive development technologies to build their own fuel-efficient version of the Saturn Vue car.

“It’s going to be exciting to see who wins for best design, and get a glimpse of the new era of hybrid cars,” said Councillor DeBaeremaeker. “The EcoCAR Challenge is also an opportunity to see students taking our environment seriously and how we all can help to create a healthier environment.”

The EcoCar challenge takes place over a span of three years. This is year one for teams taking part in the competition, where teams vie for best-designed vehicle. In year two and three, the teams build and test their vehicles and a winner is announced at the end of each cycle.

On June 12, the university team with the winning design for the first year of the EcoCAR Challenge will be announced in the Sheraton Centre Hotel, Toronto at 11:45 a.m. For more information on the EcoCAR Challenge, please visit

Toronto is Canada's largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. Toronto has won numerous awards for quality, innovation and efficiency in delivering public services. 2009 marks the 175th anniversary of Toronto's incorporation as a city. Toronto's government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Media contact:
Cindy Bromley, Finance and Administration Communications Manager, 416-392-4993,



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