List of Media Coverage To Date


Amateur team builds ultra-efficient electric car in a barn.Yale Climate Connections. 03/30/20.


EV Vehicles.” Bishop On Air. WMAY 970 AM. Springfield, IL. 12/01/14.

Holy Tachyon Converters, Batman! X Prize contender steals show at Atlanta EV Cruise In.” Logan County Herald. Lincoln, IL. 08/11/14.

‘Seven’ comes to the Electric Car Cruise-in.” The Courier. Lincoln, IL. 08/06/14.

Flight Feather Design and Illuminati Motors.” Central Illinois Business Radio. NewsTalk 1400 WDWS-AM. Champaign-Urbana, IL. 07/01/14. (26.30 seconds into the podcast).

Money-saving technology on display at Portage Co. energy fair.” David Schuman, WFXS Fox 55, Wausau, WI. 06/22/14.

Alternative-fuel cars on center stage at Energy Fair.” B.C. Kowalski. Stevens Point Journal. Stevens Point, WI. 06/20/14.

Marvel of efficiency on display with 200-mile-per-gallon car.” David Schuman, WAOW ABC 9, North Central WI. 06/20/14.

There’s only one Seven: The world’s most efficient car was built in a barn.” David Roth. SB Nation. 05/30/14.

Daily Planet. Discovery Channel Canada. 03/25/14.

Battery operated, barn-built futuristic car has nostalgic twist.” Matthew Hendricks. Digital Journal. 02/03/14.

This Batmobile-esque Electric Car Built in a Barn is Capable of 207.5 MPG!” Timon Singh. Inhabitat. 01/29/14.

Ask The Guy Who Built a 207 MPG Car in His Barn Anything You Want.Gizmodo. 01/27/14.

Man hopes electric cars will be the future.WAND 17 News. Decatur, IL. 01/27/14.

Riding in the Car of the Future, Built in an Illinois Barn.” Robert Sorokanich. Gizmodo. 01/21/14.


Afterlife for an X Prize Contender.” Benjamin Preston. The New York Times. 12/20/13.

Illuminati Electric Car II.Illinois Stories. WSEC-TV/PBS Springfield. A group of Springfield men developed an outstanding electric car and inspired a book about their project.12/20/13.

One 207 MPGe car, one author, and one engineer.” Cambridge, MA. MIT Edgerton Center. 12/15/13/

QuickCharge Exclusive: Illuminati Motor Works ‘Seven.’” Transport Evolved interviewed Kevin Smith at the bi-weekly Cars & Croissants in Chatham, NJ. 12/08/13.

Why Won’t Big Automakers Build the Car of the Future?” Jason Fagone. Wired. 12/05/13.

Illinois Innovation.” Springfield, IL. Illinois Country Living magazine. December 2013 issue.

Follow-up file: Book tracks ‘garage team’s’ electric car saga.” Chris Dettro. Springfield, IL. State Journal-Register. 11/11/13.

How to Spend Your Entire Income Building a Car that Must Travel 100 Miles on a Single Gallon of Gas.” (Excerpt from Ingenious.) Longreads. 11/05/13.

Area Do-It-Yourself Electric Vehicle Team Featured in New Book.” Springfield, IL. WMAY 970 AM, 11/04/13. Listen to interview here.

Jason Fagone’s Dream Car Gets 207 MPG. Too Bad You Can’t Buy One.” Michael Mechanic. Mother Jones. 11/01/13.


“Illuminati Motor Works: Seven.” Illinois Central. WICS 20, Springfield, IL. 07/07/2012.


“The past meets the future.” Auburn, IL. Rural Hilights. Vol. 62, #10. October 2011.

Electric car enthusiasts drag race at Cape Girardeau airport.” Southeast Missourian. 09/23/11.

Elburn native’s electric vehicle returns to town.” Elburn, IL. Elburn Herald. 08/19/11.

Follow-up File: Illuminati team still tweaking its fuel-efficient car.” Chris Dettro. Springfield, IL. State Journal-Register. 05/23/11.

A Car to Remember.” Doug Manninen. 05/20/11.

The ‘Magnificent’ Seven Electric Car Gets 207 MPGe.” Cheryl Kaften. Green Technology World. 05/13/11.

Streamlined new electric car concept gets an incredible 207 MPGe.” Tecca. Yahoo! News. 05/12/11.

X Prize Runner Up Achieves 207.5 MPGe.” Sam Smith. MSN Autos: Exhaust Notes. 05/09/11.

Progressive Automotive X-Prize runner-up car gets 207.5 MPGe.” Bob Yirka. 05/09/11.

X-Prize Runner-Up Gets 207.5 MPGe.” Keith Barry. 05/05/11.

Illuminati Motor Works Seven Shows Off a Healthy 207.5 MPGe.” Benjamin Jones. 05/05/11.

207.5 MPG Developed in Illinois Barn.” John O’Dell. Edmunds Auto Observer. 04/24/11.

207 mpg? This Car Goes the Distance: Strong showing for car built on co-op lines in Illinois.” Michael Khan. National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s Electric Co-op Today. 04/18/11.

10 Questions For Illuminati’s Kevin Smith.” Ronald Ahrens. Edmunds Auto Obvserver. 02/18/11.


Out but not down: Illuminati Motor Works looks to the future.” Edward VanHoose. Illinois Country Living. 12/2010.

Local man part of electric car team.” Greg Olson. Jacksonville, IL. Jacksonville Journal-Courier. 11/09/10.

Renewables Relay.” Springfield, IL. Illinois Times. 11/04/10.

No Regrets at the End of the Road: Illuminati team will keep building a better electric car.” Michael W. Kahn. National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s Electric Co-op Today. 09/21/10.

“EPA employee doing his bit for cleaner air.” AFSCME Illinois Council 31. On the Move. 09/2010.

“Homemade Electric Car Knocked Down, But Not Out.” Rural Electric Magazine. 09/2010.

“The X Factor (Radical Vehicles: Inside the Race to Build the 100-MPG Car).” John Pearley Huffman. Popular Mechanics. 09/2010.

Mainstream Finalists in Automotive X-Prize Not So Mainstream: Edison2 Team Challenging Conventional Thinking With Space-Age, Ultra-Light Vehicles.” Danny King. Green Car Advisor. 08/16/10.

Our Opinion: Car of the future.” Springfield, IL. State Journal-Register. 07/06/10.

Tough Loss for Homemade EV: Electric car was flying until the transmission gave out.” Michael W. Kahn. National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s Electric Co-op Today. 07/06/10.

“Team Illuminati almost pulls off upset of upsets.” Joe Michelich Sr. Divernon News. 07/01/10.

Transmission problems knock Illuminati out of XPrize running.” Chris Dettro. Springfield, IL. State Journal-Register. 06/29/10.

Automotive X Prize: Knockout phase delivers the punches.” Jeff Bartlett. Consumer Reports Cars Blog. 06/29/10.

Automotive X-Prize Field Winnowed to 3 Mainstream, 15 Alt Category Competitors.” Danny King. Green Car Advisor. 06/28/10.

Who’s X’d out for Auto X Prize?” Alan Boyle. Cosmic Log. 06/25/10.

Automotive X-Prize: Illuminati Seven reaches 119.8 mpge despite setbacks.” Sebastian Blanco. 06/25/10.

“Garage team’s electric car competing for $5M prize.” Miranda Viglietti. Chigagoland. Southtown Star. 06/25/10.

The Automotive X-Prize Local Connection.” Christa Chockley. Elgin Green Living Examiner. 06/21/10.

Supercars with style.” Alan Boyle. MSNBC. 06/21/10.

Car guys go for the X Prize.” Patrick Yeagle. Springfield, IL. Illinois Times. 06/17/10.

“Springfield inventors make all-electric car.” Dave Dahl. St. Louis, MO. KMOX 06/11/10.

Fuel-efficient car going for $5M prize on display today in Chatham.” Chris Dettro. Springfield, IL.

State Journal-Register. 06/10/10.

Electric Car Takes Shape In Garage.” Michael W. Kahn. National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s Electric Co-op Today. 05/25/10.

Illuminati Motor Works in running for X Prize.” Springfield, IL. State Journal-Register. 05/15/10.

“Can Illuminati win the Automotive X Prize?” Interview with Kevin and Jen. Consumer Reports. 05/12/10.

Follow-up file: Illuminati ready ‘Seven’ for on-track testing.” Chris Dettro. Springfield, IL State Journal-Register. 05/02/2010.

CR Standout Cars: Illuminati Motor Works Seven.” Consumer Reports. 05/01/2010.

Automotive X Prize: Aptera completes the handling test, West Philly triumphs.” Consumer Reports. 04/30/10.

“X Prize: Race to 100MPG.” Overview of the on-course testing the cars went through and includes footage of Seven and interview with Kevin and Jen. Consumer Reports. 04/30/10.

“Team Overview.” George, Kevin, and Josh are featured in this early overview of competing teams and discuss dedication and responsibility. Progressive Automotive X Prize. 04/30/10.

Progressive Automotive X Prize Shakedown – Round 1 in the Auto X Prize.” John Pearly Huffman. Popular Mechanics. 04/29/10.

Progressive Automotive X-Prize Entrants.” Popular Mechanics. 04/14/10.

“Driven (by electricty) to win: Electric car builders shoot for X PRIZE.” Auburn, IL. RECC Rural Hilights, 04/12/10.

Illuminati gears up for first Automotive X PRIZE event.” Amanda Robert. Springfield, IL. Illinois Times, 01/28/10.


“Racing to Finish.” December Illinois Country Living magazine. 11/30/09. Nicely designed article PDF or simple HTML.

Local guys driven to win $5M car competition” – Springfield, IL. The State Journal-Register, 11/24/09.

X PRIZE Team Passes the Test. Illuminati Motor Works is one of 43 left in international competition.” Amanda Robert. Springfield, IL. Illinois Times, 11/19/09.

“Local X-Prize Team Makes the Next Round,” WICS News Channel 20 Nightside. Springfield, IL, 11/08/09 at 10pm.

“Illinois inventors keep eyes on the X Prize.” St. Louis Post Dispatch, 10/23/09.

“Virden Illinois X Prize.” New video of the car on the St. Louis Post Dispatch site, 10/22/09.

Metro Variety Show, Springfield, IL Comcast Channel 4, Sun. Sept. 30th, 7am, 1pm, 7pm. First of a two part episode. 08/29/09.

Automotive X PRIZE competitor Illuminati Motor Works Q & A”, Iggy Uncensored, 08/18/09.

WMAY 970 AM Bishop on Air Saturday Session show, Springfield, IL. 07/11/09. (Listen to archived show.)

WICS News Channel 20, at 5:30 and 10pm. Springfield, IL, 06/28/09.

Eyes Still On The Prize,” Springfield, IL. Illinois Times. 04/09/09.

“Alternative-energy car enthusiasts offer tips for an efficient vehicle,” Colorado Springs, CO. The Gazette. 01/02/09.


“Hyundai asks car crew to increase fuel efficiency fast: X Prize team takes time out for ‘eco-friendly project,'” Springfield, IL. Illinois Times. 12/18/08.

Car-building group to be on TV after teaming up with Hyundai,” Springfield, IL. State Journal-Register. 12/13/08.

Brink, Discovery Science Channel, 12/12/08. Team IMW was interviewed by the Brink crew for their 3 part episodes about Maker Faire that will air beginning in Dec. See video clip here (select “Brink News: Maker Faire”).
Or check out YouTube version.

Best Buy Geek Squad Interview with IMW at Maker Faire. Available on YouTube.

The Race for the Car of the Future,” Tegenlicht, VPRO, Netherlands, aired September 29, 2008 and will repeat October 14, 2008. Click here for English translation of web page. View “The Race for the Car of the Future” documentary. (The intro is in Dutch but the majority of it is in English. IMW appears throughout. Click here for the video.)

“Metro Variety Show.” Springfield, IL, Cable Access channel 4, aired 6/29/08.

Illinois Stories,” Springfield, IL, local PBS station, 6/19-6/23/08.

“Kelm & Kirk,” Springfield, IL, WMAY 970 AM radio station, aired 6/4/08.

Illuminati Illuminated,” Amanda Robert. Springfield, IL. Illinois Times, 4/17/08.

The 100 MPG Car,” Info Trak, Nationally syndicated radio show, broadcast on 350 radio stations 3/29-3/30/08.

RFD Today, Illinois-based syndicated radio show, interviewed Kevin Smith. 3/26/08. Click here for unedited mp3 of entire show.

IT Cover

“Eyes On the Prize: Five local guys are designing and building the car of the future in a field near you.” by Amanda Robert. Springfield, IL. Illinois Times. 3/27/08.

“Want a 100 MPG Car? Local Team Working To Win $10 Million By Designing One.” Springfield, IL. State Journal-Register. 3/17/08.

“100 MPG Car Could Be Worth $10 Million.” West Frankfort, IL Daily American. 3/17/08 (Abbreviated version of State Journal Register article.)

100 MPG Car Could Fetch Illinois Team $10 Million.” Rockford, IL. Rockford Register Star. 3/17/08. (Abbreviated version of State Journal Register article.)

“Reaching for 100 MPG — and $10 Million.” Lincoln, IL. Lincoln Courier. 3/18/08. (Abbreviated version of State Journal Register article.

The Dave Baum Show / Info Trak, Nationally syndicated radio show, aired 3/12/08. Listen to the “The 100 MPG Car” and “Building and Marketing the 100 MPG Car” segments.

“Building the 100+ MPG Car: Electric co-op member works to shape the future of the automobile industry.Illinois Country Living magazine, March 2008 issue.

The environmental protection automobile technology crazily with innovates for X time.” Sanlain Lifeweek, Mainland China, 2/12/08 issue. (Bad Babelfish translation)

Fly Over Zone radio show, no. 236, Springfield, IL, WQNA 88.3FM radio station. 1/26/08.

1 Gallon of Gas, 100 Miles — $10 Million: The Race to Build the Supergreen Car.” WIRED magazine 16.01 issue (1/08):


Wired Photo

Photo by Misha Gravenor and located on

Blog Mentions and Emails

“How about picking a better name than one that promotes the Illuminati?? I thought you Illuminati scum only hid in the shadows and used underhanded, disgusting tactics to further their ridiculously misguided agenda. Do you worship Lucifer as well, maybe you should throw a Baphomet emblem on the side of your vehicle and than [sic.] you’d be really cool…To even promote that pathetic garbage or those pathetic people in a joking matter is disgraceful. Repent…that’s my suggestion.” (an email from Charles Kromray, 12/03/11) [Editor’s note – Illuminati Motor Works is neither associated with THE Illuminati nor do they worship Lucifer.]

“The car is actually a bit remarkable – the team DROVE it here to Cape Girardeau Missouri some 214 miles on a single charge – achieving an energy usage of 155 wH per mile. We tick off about 220 on the Speedsters and Spyder at about 2000 lbs. That they got a 2900 lb car to roll with that efficiency was remarkable.” (“EVTV Blog June 5, 2011” EVTV)

“When Kevin pulled up to the driveway, I couldn’t believe my eyes. Was expecting something small like a Nissan Leaf. Instead, I was looking at a cross between a silver DeLorean (complete with gull wings) and the Batmobile.” (“Electric Car Saves the Day” 10/21/10).

“I saw the Seven in its primer-gray state, and that hideous gosling would’ve been judged defective by its mother and killed. It’s hard to say what the men of Illumnati Motor Works will get out of this battery-powered geexster. Reading their blog is a frightful experience, though. If they fuse wires together like the sentences of the following example, it’s trouble: ‘We are basically self funded this has good and bad; how is this good you might ask?’ Or I might not. Use of “The Magnificent Seven” as the operation’s theme song is prohibited.” (“Questions about the Progressive Insurance Automotive X Prize, ” Ronald Ahrens, Baggy Paragraphs Company. 05/11/2010).

“Do you want to support U.S. Manufacturing? Well, Illuminati Motor Works is a good place to start. The IMW guys and gals love manufacturing, have seized an enormous challenge, and are up against some better-funded competition. What’s most astounding about IMW is that they’ve continued to out-compete and survive through several stages of competition, most recently on January 9th, 2010. They are now one of only 43 teams remaining in the international competition that started back in 2007.” (“For The Love Of The Game,” MOJO. 02/10/10).

“While there may be many other competitors working on a shoestring budget. I’m not aware of their story. Honestly I’m surprised with all the eco documentaries being filmed that someone isn’t following one or more of the teams in their quest to build a more fuel efficient vehicle.” (“Central Illinois team Illuminati Motor Works survives Moves onto next round of Progressive Automotive X PRIZE”, Iggy Uncensored. 10/20/09).

“Anyone who reads here often will know I feel our reliance upon fossil fuels is ridiculous. Illuminati Motor Works in their decision to build an all electric vehicle have chosen a path that could help reduce our dependency on that limited resource.” (Iggy Uncensored, 06/30/09).

“In case you haven’t yet tuned in to the Science Channel’s new series Brink you should tune in this Friday, December 12th at 10 PM—this week’s show will be of particular interest to those of you interested in improving the fuel economy of our cars. This week host Josh Zepps will be profiling Illuminati Motor Works , who are attempting to win the Automotive X Prize.” (This Week on Brink: Auto X Prize Contender Illuminati Motor Works by Matthew McDermott, 12/12/08. YouTube video of Brink Episode available here.)

Congrats to IMW- Maker Faire Editor’s Choice 2008.”

“The editors of Make Magazine and organizers of Maker Faire have just awarded the Illuminati the ‘Editor’s Choice’ and ‘Congeniality’ award for the 2008 Maker Faire in Austin, TX.

Not only have the guys gotten a huge response from visitors and Makers alike, but they’ve also impressed the editors of Make Magazine themselves, who have seen thousands of creative groups and ideas in the magazines 3 years of publication.” Hyundai Eco-Modding Blog, 10/21/08.

Mr. Jalopy Interviews Illuminati Motor Works.” (MP3) Mr. Jalopy (Make Magazine) highlights projects that you can find at Maker Faire in Austin, TX on 10/18-19, 2008. MP3 of interview posted at Make Blog, 10/14/08.

Greenbacks For a Green Car” Posted at The Love Of Sports by Adam Ruggiero on 05/02 at 10:06 PM

Underdogs Still In Need Of Your Support” Posted At : April 7, 2008 12:08 PM | Posted By : AJ Sweatt, MFGx – The Global Manufacturing Community.

Underdogs Going For The Green, Automotive X PRIZE” Posted At : January 16, 2008 1:44 PM | Posted By : AJ Sweatt, MFGx – The Global Manufacturing Community.