Carrying the regulation-maximum 6 square meters of solar cells and reaching speeds of up to 94 mph, the Solar-powered Tokai Challenger built by a team from Tokai University, Japan,  has fought it's way across 3000 kilometers of Australian desert ahead of the pack to take first place in the premier "challenge class" of the 2009 World Solar Challenge!

In an unexpected reversal of fortune the U.S.-based University of Michigan Solar Car Team slipped from a close second place into third, edged out in the final leg of the race by former four-time world champions the Nuon Solar team from Delft Technical University in the Netherlands.

38 full-solar vehicles from 17 countries were entered in this year's World Solar Challenge,  a biennial event in which teams create the most efficient solar-powered vehicles in the world and race them from coast to coast across the Australian outback.  The race has been held since 1987 and has now expanded to produce the broader Global Green Challenge which runs concurrently and includes various classes  of hybrid, electric, solar, low emission, and alternative energy vehicles.