Marking the culmination of the 3000-kilometre race run by solar cars, Team Twente had run a distance of almost 680km – racing just in advance of other Dutch competitors Vattenfall in NunaX and Top Dutch Solar Racing in Green Lightning.

In spite of their possession of the smallest car in the race, Team Twente recorded running at speeds of up to 90km/h in its RED E entrant.

Other teams excelling Sunday included Germany’s Sonnenwagen, Japan’s team Kogakuin and Agoria from Belgium.

All the news wasn’t good, however, as Stanford University’s Black Mamba team encountered a severe battery failure. And Turkey’s Team Solaris and Thailand’s Siam Technology team in STC3 saw their autos trailered as well.

More than 40 teams representing 21 nations compete in this year’s challenge, with the winning autos expected in Adelaide Thursday.

As the field departed from Darwin, event director Chris Selwood explained the increased relevancy of this vehicular challenge, introduced 32 years ago; this relevancy owed to the climate change debate and the increased emphasis on the concept of sustainable mobility.

The event has been conducted biannually since 1987, both serving to promote sustainability and boosting the NT and SA economies.

As teams travel to Adelaide, they will advance past checkpoints at Katherine, Daly Waters, Tennant Creek, Barrow Creek, Alice Springs, Kulgera, Coober Pedy, Glendambo and Port Augusta.