If you’ve been searching for a tiny electrically powered car with no doors, no rear window, and an open roof with a pair of electric skateboards on it, then Smart Automobile may have a solution for you.
Unveiled at the Frankfurt Auto Show last week, the Smart Fourjoy may be one of the auto industry's most unusual vehicles, even by the bizarre standards of the concept car. It includes a futuristic interior with a rear bench seat designed to look like lounge furniture, as well as transparent exterior parts and LEDs fitted to its front and rear lights.
The Fourjoy also features an all-electric powertrain. A 17.6-kWh lithium-ion battery drives a 55-kW permanent magnet electric motor. Smart says that it takes seven hours to charge the battery from a household socket, longer if a 120V line is used.
To accentuate its commitment to zero-emission driving, Smart incorporated hardware to fasten two so-called "longboards" to the Fourjoy's roof. "With these electrically driven skateboards it is possible to cover short distances in the city without producing any local emissions," the company said in a press release. Smart added that skateboard helmets can be stowed behind the seats and that a high-definition camera is available to film the skateboard adventures and share photos with friends on social networks.
Clearly, the Fourjoy was designed to deliver some buzz to Daimler's Smart division, and it's doing that. It's also serving as an experiment -- the first vehicle jointly developed in a partnership with French automaker Renault SA. Smart has not announced any specific plans to build the Fourjoy, but it has said that it will launch a similarly proportioned four-seater late in 2014. Renault is also reportedly working on its own version of the car, to be released sometime next year.
We've collected photos of the fanciful Fourjoy concept car. From LED lights and transparent panels to lounge chairs and pearlescent paintwork, we present some of the Fourjoy's most unusual and innovative concepts. Click on the image below to start the slideshow.
Daimler's Smart Fourjoy concept car has no doors, no rear window, and an open roof. Smart says it "dispenses with unnecessary ballast." (Source: Daimler)
Reminds me of the old street legal dune buggies. You could wash the interior with a hose. It was Fiberglas, vinyl, or waterproof; and had drains in the floor. The sidewall was higher though, but we only had a roll bar instead of the unibody this has. There was something daring about a buggy that made it more than just a convertible. Even in the city where you couldn't go off road.
I expect it would sell. Just look at all the 3 wheeled bikes selling today. This is an open cockpit car for driving on days you could ride a motorcycle (or 3 wheeler), but without needing a special license or having to learn how to drive a new vehicle. The key will be keeping it simple so the price is more like a high end motorcycle. Like a buggy or bike, this won't be your only transport. It's just for fun, or should I say "for joy".
We're looking at an ingenious rollover solution here. Should the car flip due to its bizarre design, no worries. You just continue to ride along to your destination on the roof-mounted skateboards. I find this perfectly in keeping with the "Smart" car's overall strategy- if you can convince the right folks that it's cool, it doesn't matter how ridiculous it looks or how stupid the overall concept might be.
San Francisco is the perfect target market for a vehicle of this design, should Daimler choose to produce it. I've long been convinced that China has developed a long-range "dumb" ray and is testing it on our West Coast (I live near LA).
Does anyone else see an oxymoron here? We have a sandrail which is essentially a dune buggy without the fiberglass molding. Our twenty year old daughter was driving it on our property out in the country with my husband in the passenger seat. He had to continually remind her that "This is not a video game!"
Why target the young? This is the perfect geriactric vehicle. Old folks don't like to drive in bad weather, they only live in warm places like Florida, no doors to get in the way of their Jazy, cane or walker.
Charles thanks for sharing this I feel that this will be a iconic design in the automobile industry case that this is the best match outline for the urban day today travel need. And also I like to have option for normal roof.
NadineJ, not necessarily, I feel that this car would be ideal for the matured crowd also. When Mercedes launched A class (Previous version) target audience was the younger crowd but it was equally moved through the matured crowd also. Easy handling was the main reason for that.
Lithium-ion battery prices will drop rapidly over the next 10 years, setting the stage for plug-in vehicles to reach 5%-10% of total automotive sales by the mid- to late-2020s, according to a new study.
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