Innovative & Dedicated – RIT Racing Wins Formula SAE Electric

At  Formula SAE Electric 2024, Michigan International Speedway. RIT Racing Team at Rochester Institute of Technology,  Rochester, NY, USA, achieved first place overall at this challenging engineering competition. Through innovation and dedication, RIT Formula Electric team successfully placed second in endurance with top-10 finishes in acceleration, autocross, and skid pad in a competitive field of 78 teams.

RIT’s Formula Electric Racecar,  named “F32”  represents the 32nd vehicle that this team designed and built since it began national and international formula racing competitions in 1992. As Formula Electric racing has increased in popularity, RIT made a decision 5 years ago to switch from internal combustion engine to all-electric.

At this years competition, advisors Alan Nye and Michael Schrlau cheered the team on through static and dynamic events.  For over 40 years, Dr. Nye has been a pillar of the RIT Team Racing community.  What an exciting victory!

I was fortunate to speak with Kevin Swayze, chief engineer for RIT Racing about the team, the car, their innovative use of SOLIDWORKS for design and Dassault Systems’ 3DEXPERIIENCE platform for cloud data management.

Kevin, 4th year mechanical engineering student described the composition of  team with over 50 members. The team is comprised of mechanical, electrical, computer science engineers, plus business and art students.  Anyone can join and the team welcomes diversity.  These students are dedicated.  There is no formal course in vehicle design.  Students attend classes by day and spend their nights and early mornings in the shop.  Fortunately, RIT Racing has space. Kevin is grateful that the school supports the team. There is a machine shop, large area for assembly and with the help of campus police, the team can arrange to safely close off parking lots at night to test drive the car..


Kevin learned SOLIDWORKS in Newfield High School participating in VEX Robotics in Long Island, NY.  He got a copy of SOLIDWORKS from a friend and with support of his teacher, Cory Fitzgerald, began to model the robot in SOLIDWORKS.

When the RIT Racing team switched from IC to all-electric, they also made a decision to use SOLIDWORKS as the design tool. Kevin took the role as suspension lead and now is chief engineer. Their current vehicle has over 4000 components.

A proud moment and relief occurred when the judges of Formula SAE Electric presented RIT Racing the Accumulator sticker. It’s all about safety.

The team also uses SOLIDWORKS drawings to document the parts and assemblies including notes for the competition and for future improvements.

This year, RIT Racing made a management decision to use Dassault Systemes 3DEXPERIENCE platform to connect their SOLIDWORKS data to cloud storage and Product Life Cycle Management (PLM) tools for revision, security and control. With the help of SOLIDWORKS value added reseller, CADimensions, RIT made a successful addition to manage so much SOLIDWORKS information and year of year documentation.

RIT Racing will be making a few design changes this year – so stay tuned to see future innovation.

Any student team competing in a national or international events can apply for SOLIDWORKS sponsorship, including 3DEXPERIENCE platform for cloud storage and high end analysis software with the Abaqus solver. Apply here.


RIT Racing Team Photo Credit Tristian Ho @Hoho_Fotos

Thank you Kevin and the RIT Racing team for sharing your success with the SOLIDWORKS community.  We look forward in seeing you at a future event.



Design well.  Marie


Marie Planchard

Marie Planchard

Senior Director, Early Engagement, 3DEXPERIENCE Works at Dassault Systemes
Marie Planchard is an education and engineering advocate. As Senior Director of Education & Early Engagement, SOLIDWORKS, she is responsible for global development of content and social outreach for the 3DEXPERIENCE Works products across all levels of learning including educational institutions, Fab Labs, and entrepreneurship.
Marie Planchard