Chocolate-powered car's first race

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The world's greenest racing car, which has a steering wheel made from recycled carrots and can run on waste chocolate and wine, is expected to take part in its first competitive race next month at Brands Hatch.

The Formula 3 car, which was designed and developed by scientists at the University of Warwick, has a top speed of 135mph and can accelerate from 0 to 60 in less than 2.5 seconds. It is hoped that it will reach 150mph when it competes at the Kent circuit on 17 October.

Much of the car's body is made of recycled carbon fibres, and its steering wheel is made from a resin composed of waste fibres from the carrot juice industry. Its engine can run on bio-diesel made from chocolate fat and dregs from the wine trade.

"You can't make a racing car that is ultimately sustainable, but this is a step in the right direction. We believe, for its class certainly, it's the greenest racing car," said Kerry Kirwan of the Warwick Manufacturing Group.

About half of the car's bodywork is made of material that would have otherwise ended up in a landfill site, Dr Kirwan added. "We recognise that some people will want to drive fast cars so we have tried to help rather than throw our hands up in despair," he told the Science Festival.

The car can travel for between 30 and 35 miles on one gallon of fuel, and is powered by a converted two-litre BMW engine that has been adapted to drive on biodiesel.