The engineering competition was held at Calder Park in December 2023

Formula SAE bid a fond farewell to internal combustion (IC) engines and a cordial welcome to a growing number of autonomous vehicles at the December Formula SAE-A event which was held at Calder Park.
Judging was held across a range of disciplines including business presentation, cost, engineering design, acceleration, skid pad, efficiency, endurance and auto cross, with points accruing to find the overall competition winners. For a full listing of these results, visit
Taking out the overall win for IC was Edith Cowan University, with the University of Sydney in second place; while the University of Canterbury was proclaimed as the overall EV competition winner, ahead of the University of NSW, Sydney, and the University of Queensland.
Event organisers explain that Formula SAE is so much more than a competition for engineering students and related disciplines, stating it is there to assist companies as well.
Among the companies attending for the first time was Caterpillar.
“We had really solid conversations, really positive candidates that we identified. The talent is there, that’s for sure,” Caterpillar Senior Field Engineer Electrification and Energy Solutions, Casey Eastham, said.
A long-time event partner is ADF Careers who have supported the event for years.
“It is in our best interests to look at university students who are already halfway through their degrees. We have what we call our Defence University Sponsorship where we take people who are already at university, and we pay for the remainder of their degree,” ADF Careers’ Malcolm Lewis said.
It is not just the winning teams that are successful at FSAE, it is every team that enters, because every team learns from the experience and every team member gains that added real life knowledge that companies are seeking.
“I have been to many events representing Tesla’s talent acquisition team, and for me personally, this was by far the best in terms of the quality of talent that we encountered,” Tesla Lead Recruiter Pacific, Stuart van Heerden, said.
“To take part in this event generally means a large commitment over and above normal study, where students apply theoretical learnings into real world applications.
“This means they need to overcome real challenges and problems, both during development and during the event itself.
“This is identical to the pressure and challenges that they will face in the workplace.
“We were super impressed by the level of engineering, innovation, commitment, and team spirit displayed this year, especially when considering the disruption to knowledge transfer caused by COVID.
“It is no surprise that Tesla’s current workforce includes a large F-SAE alumni, both in Australia and the US, and we expect that to continue to grow. Thank you for all those who spent some time connecting with us during the event, and we look forward to seeing everyone again in 2024!”
Event organisers explain that one of the central pillars of the event is that FSAE aims to teach students how a business operates which is more than the engineering aspect, instead also covering the wider scope of manufacturing with lessons carrying to the real world, making FSAE students the most employable.
Competition organisers state, “as we say farewell to the era of internal combustion it was encouraging to see such a large contingent of EVs filling the gap with several teams from overseas, two teams from Taiwan, two from New Zealand and one from Indonesia.”

To learn more about Formula SAE, visit