all over the competition every year. They have seen over 3000 mpg before. They are essentially the team to beat. However rumors through the grape vine say that a team will be there with a car with an economy of 4200 mpg.
Our school will get there... some day
Question: Obviously you're not going to know everything they're doing, but.... Well, let me put it this way.... Way back in the dark ages I used to be involved in electric vehicle competitions ( hint
). And one thing we saw.... It was all about the bucks. The school with the most money to spend (or better equipped machine shop...which is really the same thing) was the school that won. The school with the least money to spend lost. Sure, there was a bit of shuffling as luck/fate intervened with parts failures or crashes, but as a general rule you could rank the cars in advance by how much money was spent on them....and that's the way they finished the race.
edit: To answer the obvious question: How did everybody know how much everybody else was spending? Components. Everybody researched batteries. Everybody knew what was available and what it cost. Everybody bought the best they could afford, but not everybody could afford the best (in fact, only one school could). Everybody researched motors. Everybody knew what was available and what it cost.... Blah blah blah... For every major component. Add it all up and you had a pretty good idea of what was spent on a car.