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Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE Applauds President Obama's Plans to Tighten Environmental Automobile Standards

Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE Applauds President Obama's Plans to Tighten Environmental Automobile Standards

PLAYA VISTA, CA--(January 26, 2009) - Today, the Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE, an incentive competition conducted by the X PRIZE Foundation, praised President Obama's plan to allow states to regulate automobile greenhouse-gas emissions and to expedite countrywide regulations for increased fuel efficiency standards.

"We share President Obama's goal to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions and increase fuel efficiency standards, and commend him for moving swiftly on these important issues," said Cristin Lindsay of the Progressive Automotive X PRIZE, a competition designed to inspire a new generation of viable, super fuel efficient vehicles. "Through this competition, we will stimulate innovation and show that the targeted fuel efficiency standards are possible."

The technology-neutral competition is open to teams from around the world that can design and build production-capable 100 MPGe (miles per gallon energy equivalent) vehicles that are affordable and meet market needs for capability, safety and performance. Earlier this month, the competition announced details of a Demonstration Division designed specifically for large, established automobile manufacturers to advance their latest fuel efficient vehicles.

"The auto industry is changing rapidly, and the Progressive Automotive X PRIZE plans to offer an unprecedented showcase of what the future can hold," said Dr. Peter H. Diamandis, Chairman and CEO of the X PRIZE Foundation. "We welcome the new directives set forth by President Obama, and we believe that his goals can be met and significantly surpassed. The Progressive Automotive X PRIZE directly targets these goals through the proven mechanism of incentive competition, by stimulating new technology for manufacturers and more car choices for consumers."

Already, more than 35 teams have been accepted as Registered Contenders, and an additional 100 teams have signed Letters of Intent to compete. In the coming months, the Progressive Automotive X PRIZE will announce details of a dynamic stage competition in which vehicles will be tested and showcased in real world conditions. Winners will share the $10 million prize purse, funded by Progressive Insurance.

The Progressive Automotive X PRIZE has received Resolutions of Support from both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, as well as personal support from bipartisan politicians, including Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-CA), Gov. Jennifer Granholm (D-MI), Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN), Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. The Prize has also received technical support from The U.S. Department of Energy, The Department of Transportation (NHTSA and Federal Highway Administration) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The Department of Energy has also provided a $3.5M grant to fund the public Education Program of the Progressive Automotive X PRIZE.

For more information about the Progressive Automotive X PRIZE, please visit or email [email protected].

About the X PRIZE Foundation:

The X PRIZE Foundation is an educational nonprofit prize institute whose mission is to create radical breakthroughs for the benefit of humanity. In 2004, the Foundation captured world headlines when Burt Rutan, backed by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, built and flew the world's first private vehicle to space to win the $10 million Ansari X PRIZE. The Foundation has since launched the $10 million Archon X PRIZE for Genomics, the $30 million Google Lunar X PRIZE, and the $10 million Progressive Automotive X PRIZE. The Foundation is creating prizes in five areas: Exploration (Space and Underwater), Life Sciences, Energy & Environment, Education and Global Development. The Foundation is widely recognized as the leading model for fostering innovation through competition. For more information, please visit or email [email protected].

About Progressive:

Progressive, founded in 1937, is one of the country's largest auto insurance groups and a leading insurer of motorcycles, recreation vehicles, boats, and commercial vehicles. The Company offers competitive rates and innovative products and services that meet drivers' needs throughout their lifetimes as well as 24/7 online and in-person customer and claims service.

One of Progressive's Core Values is Excellence. To the Company's more than 27,000 people, it simply means seeking constant improvement. Over time, this has meant introducing revolutionary ideas that make car insurance easier to shop for, buy and use. It's this same innovative spirit that's behind the Company's sponsorship of the Progressive Automotive X PRIZE. The Progressive Automotive X PRIZE will inspire innovation that will produce more fuel efficient vehicle choices, helping to make a difference in people's lives.

Progressive's products and services are available locally through more than 30,000 independent insurance agencies in the U.S., online at and by phone at 1-800-PROGRESSIVE (1-800-776-4737).

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