Nowadays, if you want to get from point A to B as soon as possible, you have two simple options: get behind the steering wheel of a car or jump on a motorcycle. Unfortunately, you can’t make a compromise and choose a little bit of both. Well not really, as this will going to change soon.
We’re happy to announce that a San Francisco based company named Lit Motors has developed a unique vehicle which offers a perfect mix between the agility of a motorcycle and the comfort of a car. Their new vehicle is an innovative piece of machinery and it’s pretty safe to say that it has the potential to transform the way we look at personal transportation.
This innovative vehicle will not only help you move easier through the traffic without getting wet when it rains, but it is also very efficient, being powered by electric energy.
Technically, the C-1 is an enclosed motorcycle, but its most significant feature is its extraordinary self balance, being able to drive forward and in reverse without falling over – a feature that can’t be found at any motorcycle, but is common for any car.
Lit Motors hopes to launch the C-1 on the market by the end of 2014 with a price tag of about $24,000.
Hit the jump for more information on the Lit Motor C-1.
The Lit Motors C-1 features a simple yet elegant design language. The body is represented by a series of fluid lines which seem to melt one in other, forming a shape that looks like it came back from the future.
The body is placed between the two wheels, a layout that’s similar to the one found at motorcycles. Up front, the body is fitted with four oval headlights which are combined with a big windscreen raked rearward at a pretty shallow angle. The windscreen continues to flow toward the back forming a panoramic roof with a sloped line.
Surprisingly, the back of the car comes without a glass area so rearward visibility is assured only by the lateral mirrors. The tail looks pretty simple and apart from three modern looking taillights, there isn’t anything else worthy of being mentioned.
For safety reasons, the vehicle received a set of circular ice-blue LED’s mounted in each wheel, which not only make the C-1 more visible at night, but also significantly cooler to look at.
You can hop inside fairly easy thanks to the wide opening doors. The interior environment is pretty close to the one found in a regular passenger car, as you are greeted by a flat bottomed steering wheel, two seats placed one behind the other, and a small dashboard.
Lit Motors selected a bright color scheme for the cabin which makes it look more upscale, but also pretty airy.
Most of the plastics and materials are of a reasonable quality and the overall build quality seems decent.
Space and leg room is, of course, pretty limited, but you won’t have any significant complaints if you are an average sized guy. The driving position seems a bit upright, and the seats seem to be completely devoid of any lateral support.
The rear passenger’s position is a bit strange, being similar to the one offered by a motorcycle. The passenger has to stay with the back of the driver’s seats between its legs. Judging by how this position looks, we doubt that anyone would have a good time while traveling back there.
The instrument panel is fitted with three round gauges and can be read pretty easy. Additional information is displayed on a small LCD screen mounted in the center of the steering wheel.
The company describes its vehicle as a “rolling smart phone,” due to its numerous layers of connectivity. According to Lit Motors, the C-1 will employ H2V, H2C, V2I, and V2V connectivity. The vehicle will be also packed with every amenity that should be found at a modern car such as AC, power windows, air bags, etc.
Apart from these features, the Lit Motors C-1 also offers the possibility to be started from your Smartphone and you can even program a few maneuvers.
Engine and Technology
The Lit Motors C-1 is put in motion by 20 kW (26.8 HP) worth of electric motors which provide a top speed of up to 190 kmph (118 mph). The electric motor cranks out 54 hp and can send you from 0 to 100 kmph (62 mph) in 7 seconds.
The battery pack is mounted under the floor and can be fully charged in six hours. With its batteries fully replenished the Lit Motors C-1 can travel between 150 and 220 miles. The estimated price of driving 200 miles on board the C-1 is less than $1.
The most important feature offered by the Lit Motors C-1 is its gyroscopic technology which helps it stay in perfect balance even in the case of an accident. The vehicle is helped to remain upright by a set of electronically-controlled gyroscopes located under the floor, which generate over 1,300 ft.-lb. of torque.
The company said that this innovative technology can be used also in other fields such as airplanes, boats, or even on top of buildings in high wind areas.
The C-1 is equipped with a KERS regenerative braking system which stores the kinetic energy in a pair of flywheels. The same flywheels also play a major role in the gyroscopic stabilization system.
The Lit Motors C-1 is a quantum leap forward in terms of technological innovations, as it opens the road of a new type of vehicle that combines the advantages of both motorcycles and cars. Moreover, despite its compact dimensions, the cabin is pretty comfortable and is also equipped with every feature expected to be found in a modern car.
On top of that, the C-1 offers decent road performance and it’s the first two wheeled vehicle in the world equipped with a gyroscopically stabilizer that really works and is ready for mass production.
Saves us money at the pump
Modern car amenities
Passenger seat location looks uncomfortable
Limited interior space
No rearward visibility