3D-Printed Urbee City Car is Efficient, Light and Nearing Production
Hell, we've come a long way in the world of technology, especially in an automotive sense. With companies like Tesla paving the way in green technology, start-ups like Jim Kor's Urbee- a 3D-printed hybrid city car project- are becoming the wave of the future. Founder Jim Kor- who has been a longtime advocate for greener tech- is the main engineering brain behind the whole project. Previously finished projects range from tractors to buses and even commercial swimming pools, all under the Kor Ecologic brand name. But now focusing solely on the Urbee- his dream for a lightweight, printable city car is inching closer to a reality than ever. "We thought long and hard about doing a second one." "It's been the right move," he says about the current generation of Urbee.
The three-wheeled hybrid is produced not in a factory, but rather, in an on-demand 3D printing facility entitled RedEye. Using ABS plastic via Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM), the printer sprays a molten polymer chassis piece by piece until complete. In total the car takes just about 2,500 hours (approx. 104 days) to complete. Which is no walk in the park. In all, the key with the Urbee is efficiency. With a curb weight of 1,200 pounds and a diesel hybrid powertrain, Kor says that the Urbee- in theory- can reach New York to San Fransisco on only 10 gallons of gas with a top speed of somewhere around 40 mph (which they're going to test sometime next year). Kor hasn't said when the Urbee will go into production just yet, but he does say that he already has 14 orders. And if it's anywhere near the cost of the original prototype, it could set you back a hefty $50K. Source: Wired