3D-Printed Car Showcased In Detroit

Local Motors, a tech company based in Phoenix, Ariz. (https://localmotors.com), might be on the edge of the future of automobile manufacturing.

The company debuted its 3D-printed car, the Strati, at the Detroit auto show. The two-seater is made of an ABS plastic that has been reinforced with carbon fiber. Local Motors is the first company to attempt to print the body and chassis components of a vehicle together.

The Strati takes 44 hours to print. The company is already working towards a goal to speed up the print rate to 24 hours, while maintaining the quality of the car. Everything on the car that could be integrated into a single material piece has been printed, according to the company. This includes the chassis / frame, exterior body and some interior features. The mechanical components of the vehicle, like battery, motors, wiring, and suspension, are sourced from Renault’s Twizy, an electric powered city car.

Once the 3D-printed car is cleared by U.S. vehicle rules and regulations, it will be drivable on public roads. The company’s goal is to have this completed in 2015. The vehicle’s top speed is 50 mph. Its transmission is automatic and features both front and rear and rear-wheel drive.

Potential buyers can sign up for updates on the website by clicking “Reserve Mine.” The email does not obligate anyone to buy, it just allows them to receive updates on production and sale. The Strati will cost between $18,000 and $30,000.

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