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Taiwan-made special vehicle wins prizes in Kuala Lumpur

KUALA LUMPUR--A fuel cell vehicle designed by Taiwanese college students recently won the speed and design categories of an international special vehicle competition in Kuala Lumpur.

The vehicle achieved a maximum speed of 63 km per hour in the Shell Eco-marathon Asia on July 7, while the best result registered by the runner-up in that group was 42 km per hour, according to the competition website.

The NT$2 million (US$66,795.25) hydrogen-powered car, designed by a team of 11 students from National Kaohsiung University of Applied Science, also won the prestigious Design Award.

The car's outstanding features were a multifunction steering wheel, touch screen, lightweight structure, low wind resistance and elegant exterior, Kuo Chun-hsien, an assistant professor at the university who led the team, said yesterday.

Kuo said almost all the competing teams encountered mechanical problems on site due to the high temperatures in Kuala Lumpur.

The Taiwan team was forced to change tactics when unstable pressure was detected in the car's fuel cell, he added.

The Eco-marathon, sponsored by the Dutch gas company Shell, is held annually in Asia, Europe and the Americas for special vehicles that are built to achieve the highest possible fuel efficiency.

The competition in Kuala Lumpur, held in Sepang International Circuit from July 4-7, attracted more than 1,500 participants from 18 countries.

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Students of the Solomon car racing team of the National Kaohsiung University of Sciences pose with their energy-efficient car after winning the Shell Eco-marathon Asia 2012 at the Sepang International Circuit in Kuala Lumpur, Saturday, July 7.

(CNA)

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