The University of Waterloo Alternative Fuels Team (UWAFT) was first established in 1996 as one of only a few student design teams on campus. Originally located in a small garage in the university's physics building, a group of engineering students with a passion for cars wanted to make a difference.

The group was interested in designing and building vehicles but also had the awareness of the potentially harmful environmental impacts that these vehicles could have on the earth. With the realization that both oil and gas were a key factors in the problem, the team focused on finding viable alternatives to fuel the cars of the 21st century. 

The team took part in many challenges in the form Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition's (AVTC).

They include the following:

  • 1996-1997: Propane Vehicle Challenge
  • 1996-1999: FutureCar
  • 1997-1999: Ethanol Vehicle Challenge
  • 1999-2004: FutureTruck
  • 2004-2008: ChallengeX: Crossover to Sustainable Mobility
  • 2008-2011: EcoCAR: The NeXt Challenge
  • 2011-2014: EcoCAR 2: Plugging In to the Future
  • 2014-Present: EcoCAR3: An Advanced Vehicle Technology Competition