SOL of Auburn 2005

The 2005 Sol of Auburn racing on North America's highways and interstates.

While displaying the 2005 Sol of Auburn vehicle the team was frequently asked, “When will I see cars like this on the road?” Unfortunately at that point we had to reply, “Nowhere in the near future.” After returning from the race, the team began to talk about designs for the next car. Over the course of several meetings, the team decided to design their next car as a concept vehicle proving that solar vehicles could be designed for today’s automotive consumer. The result was TIGER (short for Transportation Integrating Green Energy Resources), which is made from low-weight composite materials and uses a low-drag design much like vehicles designed by the team in the past. However, TIGER’s unique hybrid drivetrain allows for the integration of biofuels along with direct solar energy.

TIGER parked after a short test drive.

Blending both power sources requires an intelligent control system, and to assist the driver TIGER has many of the features found in modern production vehicles. Along with the traditional pedal, brakes and steering wheel, TIGER features a touchscreen interface to the vehicle’s sensor and control network as well as built in WiFi and GPS radios. Ultimately TIGER is not a race vehicle, but one designed with the average American in mind — with regards to cost, comfort, performance, and environmental friendliness.


  • 1825 lbs, 6’ width, 15’ length
  • Solar/Biofuel hybrid commuter vehicle
  • Capable of carrying 2 passengers with ample cargo space
  • Air Conditioning and Rear View Camera Systems
  • Industry standard sensor/control network interfaced to GNU/Linux dashboard touchscreen computer.

Power Systems

  • Briggs & Stratton Turbocharged Diesel Engine (34 HP)
    : 450 miles on a single 7 gallon tank of fuel (unassisted by the electric motor)
  • NetGain Warp9 DC Electric Motor (32 HP)
    : Designed for 100 miles on single plug-in charge, 50 mile daily “free” solar commute when recharging using solar arrays

Charging & Battery Systems

  • 78V 130Ah Lithium-Ion Battery pack
  • 3 Photovoltaic Arrays
    426 Mono-crystalline silicon cells (3 Watts per cell)
    1 boost-type peak-power tracker per array matching array voltage to battery voltage
  • “Plug-in” wall charger
  • Regenerative Braking