After it raised eyebrows last year, this year, Local Motors’ 3D-printed car got a bit cooler. Now the Tempe based company wants to kick everything up one notch as it has accepted a new, more interesting design for its next printed project.
You may remember that last year’s Strati was a bit funny-looking, not giving as much in the way of design as it gave in the way of promises. What did it say?
Well, for starters, it has shown us that the idea of a car to be completely computer generated is perfectly feasible. It then made us aware that, despite it still being something that could be improved upon, it could look quite good. Especially, it could look normal.
It also had ABS. It could reach speeds of 40 mph. And it was completely green, not in color, but in specs, as it was powered by the miracle of batteries. On a single charge it could go up to 120 miles. All in all, impressive for the experiment that was the Strati. Yet, still impossible to compare with a “normal” car, not even with an electric one.
And it never became road ready. It wasn’t even legal to drive it on highways.
Now, what do you think the heads from Local Motors have done this time? Well, the same thing they did last time. That is, they organized an online competition for the design of the next generation of printed cars. Then, last Thursday it gave the sum of $7,500 to Kevin Lo, the winner of said competition.
His design was selected by a panel which also included former Tonight Show host and famous motoring enthusiast Jay Leno. The man said that he had chosen the design made by Kevin Lo since it was the only one which made you go “What’s that?”
And maybe Leno’s talk show host intuition was the good way to go, since that’s exactly what the car looks like. Lo confessed that, with only three weeks to work on the concept, he focused on creating a big tub out of carbon fiber, which could hold the batteries, the engine, the chassis, and the wheels. On top of that would be added whatever body would be preferred by the user.
The design itself was influenced by models from Aston Martin, Jaguars, Lotuses, and the Chevrolet Corvette.
No real physical version of the vehicle was actually printed yet, but as cool as the design looks, there’s surely a lot of expectation to seeing it in action.
Image source: mshcdn.com