Built-From-Scratch Eco-Car Wins AutoZone's "Show It Off, America" Contest

Car enthusiasts from across the nation recognized for best DIY projects

Sep 19, 2013, 08:00 ET from AutoZone

MEMPHIS, Tenn., Sept. 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- AutoZone has announced the winners of its Show It Off, America social media contest, which recognized the best do-it-yourself (DIY) automotive projects in the country. A group of students from Mater Dei High School in Evansville, Ind., led by parent volunteers, were deemed the grand prize winner for their "eco-car" creation. The group received a Duralast® 392-piece tool cabinet, valued at $2,500, and will participate in activities this year that showcase the winning vehicle. To enter, participants were asked to upload an image of their most impressive DIY automotive project and submit a brief description of their efforts. Entries were judged on the basis of project difficulty, creativity, outcome and fan votes.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130919/CL82599)

The one-person eco-car was built entirely from scratch. It features an aluminum tube frame, carbon fiber body and four-wheel hydraulic disc brakes, and is powered by a 50cc fuel-injected gasoline engine. It took the team of students 10 months to complete their project, often getting parts and advice from their local AutoZone store.

"We're honored to be recognized by AutoZone for the eco-car our students built," said Robert Neisen, one of the project advisors.  "Up until now the team depended on community supporters to lend or donate many of the tools needed for projects. Now, thanks to AutoZone, our students can better tackle projects and pursue their automotive passions." 

The small vehicle, able to carry one adult-sized person and a suitcase, is quite a showstopper. In fact, the ultra-fuel-efficient car, able to get 849 miles per gallon and set a new record in this year's Shell Eco-marathon Americas competition, surpasses last year's efficiency record of 238 miles per gallon.  

"There are growing numbers of Americans taking auto repairs, maintenance and even rebuilds into their own hands," says Tom Newbern, senior vice president, store operations and store development customer satisfaction, at AutoZone. "Show It Off, America celebrates DIY car enthusiasts from across the country that came out from 'under the hood' to share their projects with others."

AutoZone is also proud to recognize this year's contest runner-up, and winner of $1,000 cash prize, as well as the remaining finalists, each of whom received an AutoZone gift card that can be used for future DIY projects.  Finalists include:

  • 2nd place—Matthew Theriot; customized 1974 Volkswagen Beetle (Marrero, La.)
  • Finalist—Mark Fulsom; restored 1969 Camaro (Houston, Texas)
  • Finalist—Micheal Doscher; transformed 1990 300ZX (Boca Raton, Fla.)
  • Finalist—Jim Kious; reconstructed 1921 Model T Ford Speedster (Columbia, Mo.)
  • Finalist—Darren Simmons; upgraded 1969 GTO Pontiac (Tacoma, Wash.)
  • Finalist—Joseph Maslonka; 1969 GMC SWB\nLT1 350 rebuild (Junction City, Kan.)
  • Finalist—Dion Chaney; reconditioned 1990 Silverado

Photographs of the winning car, finalists and other submissions can be found on Facebook. For more information on DIY car care tips, maintenance how-to videos and exclusive deals, visit www.autozone.com, and join MyZone—a community for DIY auto enthusiasts.

About AutoZone

As of May 4, 2013, AutoZone sells auto and light truck parts, chemicals and accessories through 4,767 AutoZone stores in 49 U.S. states plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico and 341 stores in Mexico and one store in Brazil for a total store count of 5,109.  
AutoZone is the leading retailer and a leading distributor of automotive replacement parts and accessories in the United States. Each store carries an extensive product line for cars, sport utility vehicles, vans and light trucks, including new and remanufactured automotive hard parts, maintenance items, accessories, and non-automotive products.  Many stores also have a commercial sales program that provides commercial credit and prompt delivery of parts and other products to local, regional and national repair garages, dealers, service stations, and public sector accounts.  AutoZone also sells the ALLDATA brand diagnostic and repair software through www.alldata.com. Additionally, we sell automotive hard parts, maintenance items, accessories, non-automotive products and subscriptions to the ALLDATAdiy product through www.autozone.com, accessories through www.autoanything.com and our commercial customers can make purchases through www.autozonepro.com.    AutoZone does not derive revenue from automotive repair or installation.

About Shell Eco-marathon
Shell Eco-marathon is a global program that challenges high school and college student teams to design, build and test the most energy-efficient vehicles. With annual events in the Americas, Europe and Asia, this innovation competition pushes future scientists and engineers to travel the farthest distance using the least amount of energy. Visit www.shell.com/ecomarathon/americas to learn more about this program.