Over the past few years, the Phoenix, AZ-based Local Motors company has been repeatedly praised by the 3D printing community for their efforts to realize actually functional 3D printed cars. And they have gotten increasingly good at it, unveiling their signature Strati car last year. In September 2014; they actually took it for a test drive. But they are now set to take things to the next level, having picked Kevin Lo’s 3D printed car designs for an actual commercial production line that is set to become available next year.
‘At Local Motors, we are hellbent on revolutionizing manufacturing,’ CEO and co-founder John B. Rogers, Jr. told reporters. ‘Car manufacturers have been stamping parts the same way for more than 100 years. We now have the technology to make the process and products better and faster by linking the online to the offline through direct digital manufacturing. This process will create better and safer products.’
Lo spent nights and weekends working on his design using Creo Design software, as he had just three weeks to complete it. ‘The idea behind my entry was you build that carbon-fiber tub [which would hold the batteries, motor, chassis and wheels] and you can put whatever body you want on it,’ he explained. ‘If you look at Strati, it was meant to be a one-piece body — which is a beautiful idea — but the reality is if you take it to a highway level… you have to include safety,’ said Lo. With his design, any part is easily removed and replaced with another 3D printed component, which is very useful in case of a collision. Read more.