The UiTM team proposed its ‘Techno-Seat’ prototype which features a hidden storage compartment built into the back of the front passenger seat, with a hinged latch. The compartment features LED illumination upon opening, a USB charging port and a storage pocket. The compartment is also flush with the seat back.
Besides the overall category, there were also parts development and product marketing categories, and both categories were also won by the team from UiTM.
“This is indeed a testament to the ingenuity of the local students, as they have managed, with a budget of under RM15,000, to produce something quite interesting in terms of function and design,” said Perodua President & CEO, Datuk (Dr) Aminar Rashid Salleh.
Their proposal will be considered for study with a local vendor to be included in Perodua’s future models. “We hope to see this design implemented either in our current model line-up through running changes or new models in the years to come,” he said.
First held in 2009, the Perodua Eco Challenge (PEC) offers students and faculty members from local higher-learning institutions an avenue to show their creativity in terms of design, engineering and business prowess against their peers from different institutions.
This year, the competition shifted its focus from the redesigning existing Perodua models to the development of vehicle components and accessories. The teams were required to produce a car part or accessory that fulfils the element of ECO (Environment, Creativity and Originality).
“After the 2014 PEC, we decided to take some time to rethink and revamp the entire competition. We believe that in the medium-to-long term, the new format brings better benefits for both the institutions and Perodua,” Datuk (Dr) Aminar said.
A total of 27 higher-learning institutions around the country were invited to pitch for PEC 2017 in November 2016, 10 of which were ultimately selected to compete. Since the start of the year, the 10 institutions have been working closely with Perodua’s R&D team, mentors and vendors to produce prototype parts and components with a focus on the parts development process.
Along the way, the teams were coached by mentors from Perodua who exposed them to real-world industry practices like project planning, scheduling, mass production costing, market trends, important design factors and more, taking their education beyond classroom walls.
The 10 entries were evaluated based on the depth of their initial project proposal, overall project progress, their final presentation today and of course their working prototype by a panel of judges. A sketch design competition held earlier in January also contributed to the final evaluation.
“We are encouraged and impressed by the entries and ideas shown by the institutions and we will continue this format in the next PEC,” Datuk (Dr) Aminar said.