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Alternative vehicles power into Studebaker museum

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SOUTH BEND, Ind. ' On March 27, the Studebaker National Museum opened its special exhibition on alternative fuel cars entitled "Alternative Fuel Vehicles: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow."

Producing alternative fuel vehicles remains one of the auto industry's great challenges, said museum officials. The exhibit takes a historical approach to a contemporary issue and features innovations from early automakers in the steam- and electric-propulsion fields. It also examines the advancements of today in hybrid and fuel cell technology. Finally, the exhibit features possible advancements on current technology and how that may affect the cars of tomorrow.

As part of the exhibit, a steam-powered 1900 Locomobile and 1911 Studebaker Electric are featured.

The exhibit also features modern advancements with a 2007 Honda Accord Hybrid and an electric race car from the University of Notre Dame. This race car was built in 1994 and participated in several intercollegiate alternative-fuel races. The vehicle provides an interesting contrast to the historic 1911 Studebaker electric and demonstrates how far electric technology has advanced in the last several decades.

The exhibit's final goal is to inform visitors about the next generation of alternative fuel vehicles. The featured car in this area is GM's 2002 AUTOnomy concept vehicle. Visitors will have the opportunity to see what alternative fuel research and technology may provide for consumers in the near future.

The Studebaker National Museum is located at 201 S. Chapin St. in downtown South Bend. It is open Monday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday noon–5 p.m. For more information call the museum at 888-391-5600 or visit

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