Local Motors unveils new 3D printed car design
Video contribution from Austin Paetow
We’ve seen 3D printed wood, chocolate, and even pizza, but the future of 3D printing includes something bigger and more powerful — cars.
Manufacturing technology company Local Motors announced their winning 3D-printed car design as part of Project Redacted Tuesday. The 3D car designed by Kevin Lo will be highway capable and roll out by the end of 2016, according to Local Motors executives.
Introducing the next 3D generation design from Local Motors
“I’m super excited to be the winner of this contest, because it’s been a long journey to get here,” Kevin Lo, product design engineer at Hewlett-Packard and winner of Project Redacted, said. Lo has been working with Local Motors for around four years on his project “Reload Redacted – Swim/Sport”.
Project Redacted was launched to challenge the co-creation community to design the next generation of 3D-printed cars. The winner was chosen by both the Local Motors community and a panel of judges including SEMA Vice President of Vehicle Technology John Waraniak and former Tonight Show host Jay Leno.
“You need something that makes you go ‘what’s that?’,” Jay Leno said. “My top choice would be Reload Redacted – Swim/Sport because it’s sporty, fun, and you can commute in it.”
Local Motors will be the first car micro-manufacturer to create a fleet of 3D-printed vehicles. They created the first model 3D-printed car, the Strati, in September 2014.
Development costs for the new design will be upward of 25 to 30 million dollars, according to Local Motors Chief Financial Officer Jean Paul Capin. The price of the actual car for the public could be only slightly more than a brand new Toyota Prius.
“We’re looking at a price point between 25 and 30 thousand dollars,” Capin said. The car will be electric, making it competitive among the electric car market as well.
The body will be fully 3D-printed with other parts such as batteries and motors from traditional manufacturing. The printer is capable of printing metal and many different plastics, according to Lo.
The car itself will be a fully certified car, which means it has to pass all the safety standards. “It has to be just as safe as any other car you would buy at any dealer,” Capin said. “We’re gonna make it as safe as we can, and that’s the objective that we currently have.”
Local Motors was founded in 2007 by CEO and co-founder John B. Rogers, Jr. and is headquartered in Chandler, Arizona. They focus on combining global co-creation and local micro-manufacturing to expose hardware innovations to the market.
The company currently has two factories located in Chandler and Tempe, with two more coming soon in Knoxville, Tennessee and Berlin, Germany.
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Photos courtesy of Local Motors.