3-D printing has already resulted in advances in manufacturing (as well as tiny stop-motion animation), but now taking it one step further is the Urbee hybrid: the world's first 3-D printed car, developed by Kor Ecologic and Stratasys.
The Urbee was created using Stratasys' Dimension 3-D printers and Fortus 3-D Production System. The full-scale prototype is not yet complete, but all of the exterior components, including the glass, will be entirely printed by additive manufacturing – printing layer upon layer of material until you end up with a car in front of you.
It's not a bad car, either. Urbee gets 200mpg on the highway, and 100mpg in the city. It can also be charged overnight using a standard electrical outlet, from wind power or from a small solar-panel array. Whether you'll see one of these in your neighbors' garage soon is dubious, but an unfinished full-scale prototype of Urbee (along with the 1/6 scale model seen above) is on display at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas this week.
Watch the incomplete prototype go on a test drive:
Gotta Luv it! Imagine, an entire dealership showroom run not by pushy salespeople, but rather by computer nerds like us!(Yeah, I know that's too good to be true, but I can dream, can't I?). A tour to a regional "assembly center", to see your own vehicle built by Microsoft would be a sight to behold!
Now they just need to 3D print a hot girl to stand next to it at car shows.
starting tomorrow, *affordable* custom cars, made locally!
Seems pretty cool that it can get 200mpg, but it look like it will be more like a go-kart than a car. It doesnt seem very safe.
Interesting :0 :)
Only the shell of this car is being printed.
Thus, it is interesting from an aesthetic standpoint - a base frame which you can customize and print a shell for (likely from the dealer who attaches it to the basic frame).
However, you could not DIY, beyond replacing body parts - the "car" itself is standard.
Also, at this point, printing is still much more costly in terms of mass production than traditional methods - so you will not get a cheaper car this way - only a more individualized and exspensive one.
Still glad to see any advances and emphasis put on custom print manufacturing - as the universal adoption of the system will hopefully lead to its eventual economic feasibility.
Can't wait 'till we can torrent cars :P
I'll bet the tires and wires where not printed.
I remember old Looney Tunes cartoons depicting future cities where entire buildings were built like this.
Chuck Jones: An accidental visionary.
wow can they print me an aircraft please. but in all reality this will put a tun of people ot of jobs because think of how meany people work on the asembely line. one company colses 400 people are out of work all closes just think of how meany will be gone and the damige it will do to our econ.
i saw a lambo on the street today i wounder if they could print me a lambo shell to make my nabors jelous?
Hmmm, a car that looks like a computer mouse with glass so heavily tinted that you cannot see the cramped interior, with all the stability of a three-wheeled ATV... and people are wanting it already? To get 200 mpg, it's probably light enough to tip over with one hand or get crushed by a close encounter with a truck. Unless it's cheap enough to put inside a box of Crackerjacks, I just don't see it.
The argument of a new technology being bad because it might "put people out of a job" is not the right way to look at advances in technology. Of course we would need to figure out something for all those employees to do, but keeping a job type around just because someone is using it for their lively hood isn't beneficial to society as a whole.
The better way to think about it would be that these employees don't have to waste their time building cars anymore. They can now use their time to build new things (like 3D printers maybe).
Eventually someone will invent the Star Trek: TNG style replicator and a super cheap energy source to power it and no one will have to work for basic survival again. Instead it will be working toward inventing awesome new ideas or future tech.
wildcatherder "with all the stability of a three-wheeled ATV" You say that like it's a bad thing.
Three wheelers are not inherently unstable depending on the weight distribution and wheel orientation. Tail wheeled aircraft were the only type available for many years and are still in use today.
Several early cars also used a tail-wheel design. I don't believe the 4 wheel design has that much better of a safety record vs. a 3 wheel design.
Have a great day today and a better day tomorrow. Stay safe, and may God bless. I wish you His peace.
If the material they print with is fiber-glass I could see it, just add resin. I'm not sure this technology is better than what 3-D Imaging Company has been doing for decades, but if it is cheap enough for the average person to afford, this technology can have endless possibilities and put prototype R&D into every nerds garage.
Getting crushed by a truck is nothing new. A truck obliterates most anything on the road right now. Professional drivers are already aware of small vehicles and have been for years. Before all of the aerodynamic designs for big rigs came along, while you were sitting behind the wheel of a truck, and entire car would "disappear" right in front of you within the silhouette or within the width of the hood of the truck itself. If you were not paying attention you could run right over the vehicle in front of you if you didn't know it was there. With newer aerodynamic designs and lower sloping hoods, this situation has been improved somewhat not only for fuel efficiency, but also for greater visability and safety. It won't matter the size of the vehicle on the road,now or in the future, it's the responsibility of the driver behind the wheel in every situation.
Just imagine customized body styles, or accessories made to your personal specifications wile you wait at the dealership. Kind of like buying unfinished furniture. Each car could be different like a personalized license plate.