Thursday, November 5, 2009

Future Vehicles, See what type of vehicles we will have in future

The British company Prodrive envisioned a new concept for a vehicle with
an enclosed body and the width of a motorcycle. Its concept Naro how-
ever has four wheels and works with a tilting mechanism to prevent
it from tipping over in curves in the road.

A conventional four-wheeled vehicle with a similar narrow track and high centre of
gravity would tend to fall over sideways when turning at high speeds. To avoid this
problem, the Naro is equipped with a carving mechanism which makes all four
wheels and the body tilt sideways during cornering. The amount of tilt during
cornering depends on the driving speed.

Photos credit: Prodrive

Prodrive envisions various applications for the Naro, including a passenger vehicle,
city taxi and delivery vehicle. The company has completed a first prototype and
is conducting road-tests during 2006.

Another enclosed motorcycle concept is in development by a European consortium,
on initiative of the Technical University in Berlin, Institute for Motor Vehicles. This three-
wheeled vehicle, named CLEVER (Compact Low Emission Vehicle for Urban Transport), is
designed as a city vehicle for two people, which requires little space, has a low weight,
a low fuel consumption and low emissions.

The CLEVER (Compact Low Emission Vehicle for Urban Transport) is a compact city
vehicle for two people, which requires little space and has a low weight. In turn, the
vehicle requires just a small engine in order to reduce fuel consumption and exhaust
emissions. The CLEVER is under development by a European consortium, on initiative
of the Technical University in Berlin, Institute for Motor Vehicles. In 2006 a prototype
vehicle was built by the University of Bath in Great Britain.

The two occupants sit behind one another in the streamlined, narrow cabin. To
prevent the danger of tipping over, the cabin of the vehicle is designed to tilt
when cornering. The CLEVER is driven by a single-cylinder engine of 230 cc
displacement, running on natural gas.

Direct drive with single-cylinder 230 cc engine
POWER OUTPUT: 12.5 kW (17 hp) @ 8,600 rpm
FUEL: Natural gas
FUEL CONSUMPTION: 2.4 l / 100 km (98 mpg US)
ACCELERATION 0 – 60 KM/H (37 MPH): 7.0 sec.
MAXIMUM SPEED: 100 km/h (62 mph)

Vehicles such as the Naro and CLEVER could replace conventional cars for daily commuting.
But an implementation problem is that most people would still require a full-sized family car
to drive in the weekend and on holidays. This means they would need to invest in the pur-
chase and maintenance of two vehicles. To make this a realistic scenario, the commuting
vehicle would have to be cheap enough to purchase and offer great savings on fuel
consumption in order to replace the family car as the daily driver.

Also parking of all these extra vehicles is a very relevant issue. The American MTI
Medialab believes a solution could be found in a network of its small electric City
Cars, which are available to anyone subscribed to the system. No individuals own
such a car. They can be found all over the city, efficiently parked in Vehicle Stacks.

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