The unveiling of the 2017 Illini Formula Electric (IFE) car was held in March at the Engineering Open House (EOH). Lan Li, vice president of IFE, reported that the team was able to drive and test their car with a great audience. Although they test their car each year at EOH, this year, she noted, they had the best performance by far.
Their car is now “successfully functional and running” with the electrical and mechanical systems mostly complete. Only minor adjustments are needed before they go to Chrysler’s test track on April 7th and 8th, which will be the time to test the car’s full functionality before the Formula Electric competition in June in Lincoln, Nebraska.
The Illini team started in 2009 as the Illini Hybrid Racing to participate in the relatively new Formula Hybrid racing competition in New Hampshire. In 2012 the team switched to the Illini Formula Electric, with the goal to build a fully electric vehicle for the 2013 Formula Electric competition in Lincoln, Nebraska. This year’s team is led by fifteen undergraduates. The Grainger CEME has been a team supporter for many years.