They dreamed of creating a hybrid sports car and then they created one on a $25,000 budget to enter into the $10M Progressive Automotive X Prize.
The Philly kids and their teachers didn’t have CAD software or much of a budget, and yet, working out of their school’s bare-bones garage, they managed to design and build two completely unique hybrid cars. Then, on a NASCAR track in Michigan, they drove the hybrids against cars from multimillion-dollar startups and prestigious universities. It’s not spoiling too much to say that West Philly performed better in the Prize than many expected. Producer Debbie Morton was there at every step, from the garage to the track, and she has put together a remarkably intimate portrait of the team. She captures the vision of the teachers, the personalities and skills of the students, and the ingenuity of the auto hacks. “Fast Times” has a lot to say, not just about cars but about education, and we wanted to give you a chance to ask questions of the key players. You can chat with Morton – as well as with Simon Hauger, the team manager, and Azeem Hill, the student team captain – starting at 2 p.m. EST on Wednesday, July 17.