By Patrick Salvatierra
What if the next time you decided you needed a new ride all you had to do was go online, purchase a template, download it and print it out?
Okay, so that’s a few years off, but there is a company in Winnipeg that has actually “printed” a car. They used a technique called “additive layer manufacturing,” which sounds like the equivalent of using a Wagner power paint sprayer to build the walls of your house. Granted, they used much better “paint.” In effect, the manufacturing process has virtually no waste, and is therefore one of the greenest processes in manufacturing. The car is built one molecule at a time.
That being said, the fact that this car was printed into existence is only one of the awesome things it has in store for you. The big one most people are interested in is the 200 mpg it’ll get on the freeway. That is more than double the fuel economy of the reigning champ (Prius) and better than any motorcycle out there. The most beautiful part about it is that the Urbee can reach a top speed of 70 mph because it has a monstrous 8-horsepower hybrid engine. Yeah, eight horsepower…trip out on that.
The final reason to get excited is that even if it costs $50,000 U.S. to buy when it finally hits showrooms, it’ll still save you money over a current hybrid because of it’s ridiculous fuel economy (said to be 100 mpg minimum).