URBEE2 3D-printed car aims to hit 290MPG on cross-country trip

Nov 27, 2013
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High fuel efficiency is an important part of a vehicle for most people, especially as fuel prices rise and environmental concerns increase. Hyper-mile drivers go to great lengths to increase their car's gas mileage, but some cars bring it to the table as its default offering. Such is the case with the URBEE2, a 3D-printed car that is about to head out on a cross-country journey with only 10 gallons of fuel.

The URBEE2 has an interior, shell, and frame components that were 3D printed out of a lightweight plastic, and as you can see in the image, the design is meant to cause very little drag -- the drag coefficient is a low 0.15, to give you an idea how easily it slices through the air. The engine is similarly efficient, being a 1-cylinder offering that can run off either diesel or ethanol.

The car is technically electric, in that it runs on a 16 horsepower electric engine that is powered by batteries, which are in turn charged by the gas engine. Despite the very low power rating, the car can reportedly travel at speeds up to 70MPH due to the light weight and the smooth design. Contributing to the light weight is the use of three wheels rather than four, with the car being rear-wheel drive.

The folks behind the car plan to drive 2,905 miles with their dog from San Francisco to New York using only 10 gallons of ethanol, meaning they'll need to hit a tad over 290MPG to pull it off. If accomplished, the task -- which has received its funding via a Kickstarter campaign -- will prove the car to be a record-breaker, and might set the stage for future automotive offerings.

SOURCE: Digital Trends


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