There is always more to every automobile that its mere physical specimen. We are of course talking about the economics behind producing a car, and how it involves wastage of resources and labor on many levels. But what about a car that avoids many of such manufacturing predicaments, and still manages to look spunky? Well, the above pictured automobile design might just fit the bill with its 3D printed credentials. Created by Phoenix-based Local Motors, the so-named Strati originally made its debut at the Detroit auto show in January. And going beyond the conventional commercial route, the designers have envisioned an economic scope that would allow the Strati to be manufactured by microfactories.
To that end, Local Motors have put forth their plans to account for 100 such microfactories (within 10 years), an expansive ambit which could involve the local workforce while also significant reducing distribution costs. So what exactly would one of these microfactories entail? Well, in tune with their first planned facility at the National Harbor, a shopping complex at Maryland, the microfactory would pertain to an infrastructure that could design, manufacture and sell the automobiles. As Local Motors CEO Jay Rogers quipped – the factories will be like “Build-a-Bear mashed up with Ikea mashed up with Formula 1”.
Of course, economic advantages are all well and good – but what about the physical aspects of the Strati itself? In that regard, one would be pleased to know that the two-seater vehicle has an all-electric drivetrain, while its body boasts of lightweight (and fuel efficient) plastic components. This is complemented by a regenerative braking system, an electronic engine immobilizer, and both front and rear wheel drive. And given its 3D printed nature, the car will only have 40 parts (as opposed to over 30,000 parts used in regular automobiles) with individual sections pertaining to – its foldaway roof, molded seats, a modular seating area and projected headlights.
Finally, coming to the specifications, the electric battery will last till a range of 62 miles (around 100 km) based on a 3.5 hour charge; while the internal powertrain can boost the car to reach a top speed of around 40 mph (or 64 km/hr). As for the pricing side of affairs, each vehicle will probably set you back in the range of $18,000 – $30,000. However, before this commercial debut, the Strati needs to be highway-legal in accordance with U.S. vehicular rules and regulations.
For more info, take a gander at https://localmotors.com/3d-printed-car/