top of page

Elastic powered vehicle international competition

Content collaborators: Joshua Han, Remi Plewe, Theo Mandin-Lee

Gensler Innovation Award

Solidoworks | Catia V5 | KeyshotPhotoshop


Best-in-Show Award


Best Design Award

"How FAST can you go with 16' of rubber band?"




Learn a new subject quickly, build working prototypes and compete against the best.  

The Formula-E project is a three-part team challenge that culminates with a competition between several universities from China and ArtCenter, where teams can win prize money and/or design awards based on their performance on and off the track. A Pro category also participates with companies like Honda, Mattel & Axial Racing joining the competition.


The teams are tasked with designing and building a radio controlled vehicle powered by a 16 foot elastic band, which will compete in time trials on three different tracks: an incline uphill track, an 8-figure track, and straight 60 meter drag track. Besides racing for the fastest times around the tracks, the team's work also gets judged by a comprehensive 40 judge panel made up of design and innovation industry experts, that assess the teams' work and designs.

Sculpture Garden Flats 

Control, Vision and Finesse

Ashtray Alley Drag Race

Traction and Acceleration

Sinclair Hill Climb

Precision, Power and Timing

The competition also involves a brand development effort aimed at gaining support from the public and distinguish the team from other international competitors. Each team sets up a booth to display their project and showcase their designs and brand.

Finally, each team collaborates with a local charity of their choosing throughout the development of the vehicle, ideally a charity that aligns with the team's mantra. Half of all the winning teams' earnings will get donated to their partner charity, as a way of supporting and saying thank you to the many non-profit organizations in the community.


Promo reel

Watch Now

See our story through the FASTish instagram account at Fast.ish


Speed. Control. Acceleration.

All mean nothing without balance.

Our design was meant to reach the intersection between handling, power and chassis compliance. Because the requirements for the competition are so varied, the vehicle needed adapt on-the-fly to the multiple track demands. 

Maximizing rapid prototype technology.

Through CAD modelling, stress testing and continuous iteration, we were able to refine the chassis to withstand the high torsional forces of the elastic band, while keeping weight to a minimum. The chassis also takes into account mass distribution for a perfect center of gravity, clearances and adaptability. 

Leveraging the latest commercial technology in radio transmission micro camera, our team was able to integrate a simple but effective VR style first-person viewing system, that allowed faster training, better control and ultimately improved lap times. In addition, our team utilized quantitative data acquisition to validate new designs and improvements.

Innovation through technology.

Dyno testing

F-E Analysis


Community Outreach

SideStreet Projects

Side Street's Mobile Youth Education program teaches tool based design and fabrication aboard mobile fabrication studios housed in buses and trailers. The program teaches tool based design and fabrication, creative problem solving and safe tools utilization, while servicing multiple under-served locations across the city.

We decided to work with SideStreet Projects, because like us, these children enjoy the challenge of design and crafting of their own things. We believe that it is important to encourage, guide and instill the passion for design early in a child's development.

We are Makers.

We created a short video showcasing our collaboration with SideStreet to display at our booth during the final competition, and to share it with our student community to promote awareness about non-profit organizations.

Promo Reel