While we have talked quite a bit about electric cars, in the past, this tiny gem of a vehicle is sure to blow your mind. Designed by scientists from the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence, the new EO Smart Connecting Car 2 (EOscc2) boasts an array of incredibly futuristic features, including the ability to drive sideways. Furthermore, its impressive shape-shifting credentials allow the car to shrink in size, in order to fit into smaller parking spaces.
The research for the development of the robotic car started way back in October, 2011, when a group of engineers and designers undertook the task of finding a solution to the ever-increasing problem of traffic congestion in urban locations. The result is a flexible, compact and lightweight electric car that redefines the concept of individual transportation. Equipped with four specially-designed wheels that can rotate a full 90 degrees, the vehicle is capable of turning in a circle. This feature, coupled with the ability to drive sideways, enables the EOscc2 to overcome the limitations of parallel parking.
Weighing up to 1,653 lb (approx. 750 kg), the EO2 is far lighter than most cars currently available in the market. What is more, for the times when it is not quite small enough, the car can actually compress itself, by packing its panels one on top of the other. This causes the vehicle to shrink from 8.2 ft (2.5 m) to about 4.9 ft (1.5m), without compromising the comfort of the seating area. An upgraded version of the 2012 EO Smart Car, the model comes with a highly-intuitive user interface. The advanced auto-navigation system is capable of operating the car without any user intervention whatsoever, thus making it completely driverless.
What makes the EO2 truly smart is the fact that it is designed as part of a concept known as “Platoon”. According to the researchers, each of these cars can be connected to others of its kind, thereby creating a sort of “electric drive-train”. This can be achieved with the help of a smartphone app. That way, only one driver will be in charge of operating the EO2 Platoon, while the rest can simply be passengers. Furthermore, the car comes fitted with a docking interface, similar to the kind found in laptops, that allows a variety of extension modules, such as range extenders and cargo modules, to be connected.
Information regarding the EOscc2’s pricing and availability have not yet been revealed.
Source: Robotics Innovation Center (RIC)