More than 150 talented future software engineers from schools in 16 countries gathered in Abu Dhabi for the Land Rover 4x4 in Schools Technology Challenge world finals. The event saw a strong performance from the UAE’s very own team, Project RAM from Repton School in Dubai who finished the competition with two significant awards.
The bright young engineers, aged 11-19, used computer coding to programme miniature remote-controlled four-wheel-drive vehicles they have designed and built for a two-day competition at the Yas Marina Circuit. One of the challenges saw the vehicles negotiate a demanding course that wound its way over and through Land Rover Discovery SUVs.
The contest, which supports curriculum learning, included an autonomous car coding challenge, reflecting Jaguar Land Rover’s commitment to Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects and a desire to recruit the next generation of engineers to design and develop future electric, connected and autonomous vehicles. K-EVO from Portugal were crowned 2017 champions; with Panthera, Malaysia and Fair Dinkum 4x4, Australia in second and third places respectively. Project RAM from the UAE won two awards: the Sustainability Award and the Judges’ Newcomer Award. Alex Heslop, Director of Electrical Engineering, JLR, said: “The Land Rover 4x4 in Schools competition will help us fill exciting future roles in software systems. The new coding challenge is a great way to introduce young people to the importance of software innovation in our cutting-edge business.”