Dirigo - Click above for an image gallery

One of the cars participating in the One Gallon Challenge is the Dirigo three wheeler. Built by Bill Buchholz, the Dirigo is right now tantalizingly close to the 100 mpg goal of the One Gallon Challenge (and the Automotive X Prize, of course). Buchholz had the following to say about his car:

Designed and built to compete in the Automotive X Prize, we have since dropped out, but finished the car and are still refining it. It is up to 99mpg on rolling country roads averaging 45mph. A hundred is within reach. Top speed so far 72mph. 0-60 about 30 seconds. Cars name is Dirigo, Latin for We Lead.
Particulars: Mid engine, front wheel drive. Three cylinder Diahatsu 950cc diesel, five speed transmission from '85 Ford Ranger. Shift pattern is reversed because the tranny is in backward. Front differential, suspension, and steering from Kawasaki Mule, rear end from '85 Kawasaki 750. Drum brakes front, disc rear. Body is strip plank wood, fenders carbon fiber.
1300 lbs., track 68", wheelbase 110".

Some of you had questions about the vehicle design when we first heard about the car in spring 2008. Whaddya think now?


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