Tuesday, April 07, 2009

GM-Segway PUMA: It’s that urban mobility thing again…

The GM-Segway PUMA project. Revolutionising urban mobility...

Pics: AutoblogGreen

Okay, so it looks more like a high-tech motorised wheelchair rather than a motorcycle, but it does have two wheels and it can seat two people, so maybe the PUMA has a place on Faster and Faster after all? PUMA – Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility – is a joint project taken up by General Motors and Segway and the aim is to build a vehicle that will change the way we move around in cities. Of course, we’ve all heard that one before…

Anyway, the PUMA is a working concept that was showcased in New York city today. It’s powered by lithium-ion batteries, is self-balancing and features by-wire tech for acceleration, steering and braking. The PUMA is also fitted with vehicle-to-vehicle communication technology, is Web-enabled and if you’re feeling particularly lazy, the thing will even drive and park itself.

‘We are excited to be working together to demonstrate a dramatically different approach to urban mobility,’ says Jim Norrod, CEO of Segway Inc. ‘The Project PUMA prototype vehicle embodies this through the combination of advanced technologies that Segway and GM bring to the table to complete the connection between the rider, environment, and others,’ he adds.

The GM-Segway PUMA can travel up to 56km on a single charge, will do a top speed of about 56km/h and can carry two people. Of course, it’s still a concept (albeit one that works…) and production reality may be far off yet. Still, this does seem to be the sort of thing we’ll all be riding around in, ten years from now…

The GM-Segway PUMA in action...


Anonymous said...

2 things you have to know to love this idea.

1) It is not a rickshaw without the straw hat guy at the front (another job lost!).

2) Neither a mama-less stroller, grow up boy! still you want mama to take you everywhere!

Note to the editor: No, its not intended to be published but to let you know that out there some people enjoy this blog a lot..even in ways it wasn't meant to be : ).



Vaughan said...

THIS does seem like sommething we'll all be riding around in ten years from now? Really??? Because today everywhere we go we see people riding around on Segways? Really??? I don't see anyone other than mall cops riding Segways! They were supposed to change the world! They didn't , They are not practical transportation, they are big expensive toys! I predict that this PUMA will be as unsuccessful as the Segway itself! Violently unsuccessful. Hello! You need to give people what they want if you want success! No one wants to ride around town in an electric glorified Baby Stroller!

Sam said...

1. It's not small enough to make it personal.
2. It's not big enough to ensure your safety
3. It's not really weather protecting.

The original Segway is a much better concept, try to lower the price under 500$, it'll sell like hotcakes. Hint: Let the Chinese make them.

If Segway wants to make self balancing things, why don't they make a self balancing motorcycles.
That would be radically change the world of transportation. Imagine you cannot fall off a bike no matter how hard you ride it! And you don't even have to learn to ride a bike anymore..

Anonymous said...

Get ready...this is what we'll be seeing from Gov't Motors..oops G.M. in a few months after the "new" design team takes over.

In case you were too blind to see, G.M's problems were due to them not making cars..err environmentally conscious personal transport devises which the public is clamoring for...LIKE THIS (sarc)

But with a $10k voucher..it will only cost the $500... A better question is..how much would you have to be PAID to be seen in a Dorkmobile???



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