Bangkok, 30 June 2009--Shell Eco-marathon, the race to search for the vehicle with the best fuel efficiency, which has been well-known and popular in Europe for 25 years, will organize the first-ever Asian event in 2010 in Malaysia. Shell invites Thai youngsters and college students to use their imagination and creativity in designing vehicles with the best fuel mileage during the Shell Eco-marathon from 16 July 2009.

Ms. Pissawan Achanapornkul, Chairperson of The Shell Company of Thailand, said that the world will face the energy challenge in the future because of three factors: a rising demand for energy, more difficulty in securing energy sources and an increase of carbon dioxide level from growing energy consumption. “As a world leading energy company, Shell is committed to reducing the environmental footprint of its operations and products,’ added Ms. Pissawan.

Shell has looked for ways to respond to the world’s energy demand in a secure and sustainable manner. The Shell Eco-marathon challenges youngsters and college students to design and create vehicles which could go the farthest distance on the least amount of fuel. In addition, the event will support new innovations and enhance the new generation’s leadership in energy-efficiency technology. Shell Eco-marathon will also inspire others to think about energy efficiency and offer a platform to work on solutions in a practical manner.

“We believe that energy-efficiency awareness should be instilled and the knowledge of how to develop energy efficiency technology should be promoted at both national and global levels because youngsters are our future. If Thai youngsters have the opportunity to exchange their knowledge and experience on energy efficiency with their counterparts from other countries, that will contribute to the country’s development in the future. We hope that more Thai teams will participate in the Shell Eco-marathon next year,” said Mrs. Pissawan.

The latest Shell Eco-marathon in Berlin, Germany, took place in May this year. Of a total of 202 teams from 29 countries participating in the event, 5 Asian countries sent their teams to compete in the race, including the THAI-GER team from Thailand’s Naresuan University in Phitsanulok. Being the first Thai team to enter the Shell Eco-marathon, THAIGER achieved 1,050 km by using hydrogen equivalent to a single litre of fuel.

Dr Sukruedee Sukchai, Deputy Director for Academic Affairs, School of Renewable Energy Technology, Naresuan University, said that the THAIGER team had great experience from taking part in the European Shell Eco-marathon. The team members, consisting of Thai and foreign students, had a good time in sharing their experience with others. Moreover, these students will be able to further develop ideas and projects in Thailand’s alternative energy technology. The presence of the team also promotes the institution at the international level, paving the way for further cooperation with leading educational institutions in Germany in the future.

The European Shell Eco-marathon 2009 set a new record. From a total of 202 teams competing in the race, the winning team from France beat its own record in 2005 of 3,410 km on the equivalent of a litre of fuel by achieving 3,771 km instead. Shell Eco-marathon this year in America consisted of 43 teams. The winning team from Canada won the top prize in Futuristic Prototypes category as well by achieving 1,172.2 km on the equivalent of a litre of fuel.

Other facts:

Shell Eco-marathon has been popular in Europe for 25 years. The first event took place in France in 1985. In 2007, Shell Eco-marathon was organized for the first time in the US. Now in 2010, the first Asian Shell Eco-marathon will be held at the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia and it will be rotated to other Asian countries in later years.

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