Is it a motorcycle? A car? Or something in-between? Meet the C-1 by San Francisco start-up Lit Motors.
The fully enclosed motorcycle/auto uses hypersensitive gyros to balance. It puts out over 1,300 pounds per foot of torque; Lit’s Founder and CEO, Daniel Kim, told Reuters that “It takes a baby elephant to knock it over.”
The C-1 is fully electric and capitalizes on the fact that most people commute to work alone. The smaller and more compact design, plus its emission-free engine, make it more economical to drive. More importantly, its design requires fewer resources to manufacture it in the first place (its electric battery is about one-third the size of a conventional electric car battery). It can hit speeds of 120 miles per hour and has an estimated 200-mile range.
Even though the vehicle is small, I had the chance to sit inside the C-1 at the Fortune: Brainstorm Green Conference. It was surprisingly roomy – even for others who top my 5-foot-1-inch height whom I watched give it a try. A second rider can snag a seat in the back for a short ride.
You can toss your cell phone in the recycling bin as well, because the C-1 is enabled to bring traffic, construction, and adverse weather condition information straight to the vehicle so you can decide on a different route.
The C-1 will not be the final name of Lit Motors’ approximately $24,000 creation, so while you’re waiting for it to hit the showroom in 2014, you can suggest a name in the comments below.