Plenty of respected car companies–Tesla, Aptera, and Tata Motors among them–have announced their intentions to compete for the Automotive X PRIZE, but the Spira foam car may beat them all in the creativity department.
Spira’s 90%-foam, 302-pound vehicle can hit a rather unimpressive top speed of 70 mph. It’s probably for the best in terms of safety, Despite assurances from Spira that “the millions of airbags in foam offer crash protection”, it’s probably hard to feel safe next to an SUV in a 10-foot-long, 5-foot-wide vehicle with only 52 inches of headroom. The two-seater can, at least, squeeze out 100 mpg…and float.
Foam car designer Lon Ballard will begin limited production of the vehicle at a factory in Thailand owned by his company, A&G Technology, some time in the near future.
The foam car is an entrant in the Automotive X PRIZE’s two-seater alternate class category–which has a $2.5 million first prize. Vehicles in the category must seat only two people, reach a top speed of 80 mph, have 10 cubic feet of storage room, accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 12 seconds, be able to
drive 200 miles, and have a fuel economy of 100 mpg.
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