SOCORRO, N.M., May 18, 2001 -- A team of New Mexico Tech engineering students competed last month against more than 100 other engineering design teams from universities across the United States, Mexico, and Canada at the 2001 Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Mini Baja West, which was held this year at Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas.
During the three-day contest, New Mexico Tech's off-road race car competed in individual events such as design, cost, safety, sales presentation, hill climb, maneuverability, and acceleration, as well as a grueling four-hour endurance race over rugged terrain. At the end of the Mini Baja, Tech's entry ended up in the 64th position overall.
Mini Baja West challenges university students to design a four-wheel, single seat, off-road recreational vehicle that is capable of negotiating rough terrain without damage to the vehicle . . . or driver. Under the competition's rules, entered vehicles must have been built by participating team members for less than $2,500 in a hypothetical production run.
By designing and building a race-ready vehicle, Mini Baja competitors garner real-world experiences in project management, teamwork, communication, engineering design, manufacturing.