Today in Europe, an inaugural three-day, 400-kilometer alternative auto competition began called the Bodensee-Elektrik 2012 Rallye intended to traverse the Alps and run through Austria, Germany and Switzerland.

Translated loosely as the Lake Electric – “Bodensee” is Lake Constance – more than 20 road-going production-based vehicles will quietly demonstrate their prowess in one of four categories: pure battery electric, fuel cell vehicle, extended-range electric, and plug-in hybrid.

“Nothing can better prove how far the electric mobility in Germany and Europe today, as the meeting of the most exciting electric car at an event such as the Lake Electrical rally,” said Transport Minister Dr. Peter Ramsauer.

Vehicles you’ve heard of participating include the Nissan Leaf, Chevy Volt, Fisker Karma, Mercedes B-Class F-Cell, Opel Ampera, and more.

We learned of the event from a Fisker press release, as the company is eager to show its plug-in EVer is ready to go the distance.

“We’re very proud that after just four years of true development, we have brought to market a range-extended electric car capable of performing in an event such as the inaugural Bodensee-Elektrik Rallye,” said Bernhard Koehler, co-founder of Fisker Automotive.

“With the Karma on-sale and being delivered to customers throughout Europe, it is a great time to show what the car is capable of,” he added.

The event over hilly terrain is more about uniformity and reliability, less about speed, and consists of three loops, one each day, that begin and end in Bregenz, Austria.

The first Lake Electric will run May 3-6 and is being held alongside the Lake Constance Classic Rally, also premiering this year as a venue for another form of alternative transportation: vintage and classic cars, and 150 of them are expected to start.