Here at Steel Seal we like to keep up to date with all the latest auto industry news, and we know that technology in this area often moves pretty fast, but ‘printing’ a car, well that’s something many never saw coming. However, with the unveiling of the world’s first 3D printed car, this vision is now becoming a reality.
The small, two-seater electric car, known as the Strati (Italian for ‘layers’) is the vision of Jay Rogers, CEO of Local Motors, and was officially unveiled at the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) in Chicago this September.
The Strati still contains many traditional parts like the motor, seats and wheels, but has far fewer components compared to a traditional car which contains around 6,000 parts, where the Strati has only 49.
The car was produced through an innovative process of Direct Digital Manufacturing, where design ideas were encouraged to be submitted, and after over 200 designs, the final design by Michele Anoe of Italy was chosen.
The Strati is printed in carbon fiber reinforced thermoplastic and took over 44 hours to print, and was assembled during four days at the ITMS. It can travel around 120 miles on a single charge, and can reach speeds to 40 mph. So, you are unlikely to pass a slow moving Strati on the freeway any time soon, but who would have expected to see a printed car any time soon either?
The dream for Rogers and the Strati is to produce a widely available, customizable car that is still affordable. It is hoped that this will be the case by 2016, with the expected cost being between $18,000 and $34,000.
So, can you see yourself cruising in a 3D printed car in the future, as it seems this dream could come true before very long at all.
So, it seems that we may be seeing these 3D printed cars in the showroom, and if you think you would like to be seen cruising in one yourself, you may not have to wait too long at all!