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Challenge Bibendum Summary Results

Michelin has posted results from The Challenge Bibendum.

Seventy four of the 150 vehicles present competed, more than 50% of which were electric vehicles.

Average energy consumption was less than 5 liters per 100 km [47 mpg] for cars, with some vehicles achieving 3 liters/100 km [78 mpg]. Diesel was highly competitive in this field, just like diesel hybrid, while very good results were also recorded for gasoline-powered hybrids. In other words, what we are witnessing here is fuel-efficiency convergence for the different technologies.

Meanwhile, electric vehicles continue to post remarkable progress notably on the back of lithium-ion batteries that deliver range in excess of 300 km [186 miles].

With respect to local pollution, the internal combustion engines achieved further substantial progress. It is worth noting that one gasoline vehicle and one 4X4 hybrid SUV achieved pollution emissions which are so tiny they are almost unquantifiable. Another strong message that came out of this sixth Challenge Bibendum was that three vehicles targeted at the Chinese market meet Euro 4 emission standards, which gives them a key competitive advantage at a time when the Beijing government is about to apply Euro 3 standards.

The vehicles were ranked on a number of criteria, including acceleration, range, fuel efficiency, CO2 emissions (both tank-to-tire and well-to-tire (min/max). (Michelin wants to use “tire” instead of the more common “wheel” as it justifiably contends that the design and quality of the tire affects the fuel consumption and thus emissions outcome.) The results matrix provides a fairly clear picture of the relative strengths and weaknesses (or tradeoffs), although it would have been very helpful to have annotations and explanations posted along with the chart. Detailed results are here.


Jeff Rusch

Are the results of the Challenge secret or something? For the second year in a row, the detailed chart doesn't actually tell you what the actual emmision or fuel consumptions of the entrants was, just a grade-school ABC rating. The written summary hints, for example, that one model even got 78 mpg and another's gas engine was virtually pollution free--well, which ones? This chart could be a fascinating and comprehensive look at the industry, but there are no numbers. Am I missing something?

I wrote them about it last year but got no response.



I would be much more useful to have the actual results. I'll give it a shot and see if I can at least get an explanation, if not the results...

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