OakTec was one of five partner companies in the Technology Strategy Board-funded Car for Young Drivers (CYD) project developing a safe, low cost, low carbon vehicle platform for young drivers. Our responsibility within this project was to develop a low cost, lightweight powertrain and prototype concepts of both a combustion engine and hybrid drivetrain solution. These powertrains were tested in a mule vehicle built by OakTec to comply with L7 quadricycle regulations.
With GOTec we developed the GO-KERS concept, an energy harvesting technology that uses super-capacitors as a power buffer interfaced with batteries through a novel lightweight high-speed power inverter.
In partnership with MIRA and Dalaero, and supported by the Niche Vehicle Network, OakTec was the project leader in the ASTAN project that investigated the aerodynamic potential of a tandem seat small car. ASTAN achieved Cd 0.185 and will be used in the future to demonstrate Oaktec’s vehicle powertrain innovations.
We have expertise, knowledge and new technologies for the development of hybrid systems, validated by competing and winning in both motorsport and fuel efficiency competitions. Our low carbon hybrid motorsport project with a Honda Insight Hybrid rally car was supported by EEMS, Honda UK and Bosch, and resulted in 22 stage rally class wins and two rally championships, beating a field of conventional special stage rally cars.
Using a modified Honda IMA system, the OakTec Honda Insight Hybrid rally car was the first effective demonstration of KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery System) in world motorsport. An FIA delegation tested the car as a fact-finding exercise prior to KERS being launched in F1.
OakTec set another global first by competing with the Insight Hybrid rally car using renewable bio-ethanol fuel, scoring a class win in the Twyford Woods Stages Rally in 2006.
Although built to win rallies, our Honda Insight Hybrid stage rally car beat a field of works-entered road cars to win the Hybrid Class in the 2011 RAC Future Car Challenge scoring 94 mpg on the route between Brighton and central London. It achieved over 100 mpg in testing.
In the 2012 RAC event we won the internal combustion engine class, driving for BMW in a 116ED and achieving 103 mpg.
Between 1999 and 2004 OakTec was a regular competitor in the Shell Eco Marathon. Our home-built special eco-car achieved nearly 2,000 mpg in testing, and won the LPG class in 2001.