Building a Formula Race Car

May 18, 2011
School of Engineering, Amritapuri

Riding in a race car which moves at 200 miles an hour can be an exhilarating experience. Building such a race car can be an even greater adventure.

Here at Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, engineering students are endeavouring to build a super formula car for SUPRA SAE, a global competition organized by the Society for Automotive Engineers (SAE).


This contest will be organized for the first time in India this year, in Chennai during July 1-3. Amrita will participate; the 23-member student team being the only one selected from Kerala.

Future engineers from the Amrita branches of mechanical, electronics and communication, and electrical and electronics engineering have already completed the design of the frame.

“In the preliminary round, a panel of automotive experts examined the design and analysis of our frame,” shared final-year student of B.Tech. (Mechanical Engineering), Ramakrishnan Kammath, the student team leader.

“We were asked to describe the basic design elements which we would incorporate. The panel selected forty teams including ours, to participate in the final round.”


The team is now working on reducing the weight of the car. Also some communication devices will be installed to facilitate information exchange between the driver and the pit crew. In addition, the students auto makers are planning to remotely monitor parameters such as torque and temperature.

The students’ single-seater formula car will cost an estimated amount of Rs. 8 lakh to build. The students have already spent a little over half this amount.

race-car“We have received sponsorship from the university as well as some well-wishers abroad through the coordination of Mr. Joshua David Freeman, our mentor,” the students shared.

Joshua is an experienced electronics and electrical engineer. In his free time in the evenings, he guides the students.

“Mr. Freeman is really an incredible man,” the students stated. “He has thorough knowledge about automotives and has already made race cars in the past. He is regularly monitoring our work and makes the necessary corrections. He is the real inspiration for our team and this initiative.”

The students shared their perspectives on what they had gained by working on the project.

“Endeavoring to build a race car has helped us really understand and apply all basic concepts in engineering mechanics such as distribution of forces, design of materials, kinetics of the machinery, etc.”

“Several of us are final-year students. This contest is giving us great experience, that can help pave the way for placements in top automobile companies in India.”


“But above all, if we win, this would be a great milestone for our School of Engineering.”

Indeed it would be. We wish these students all the very best!

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