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C1 - The Gyro-Stabilized Two-Wheeled Ground Car

The C1 is an electric-powered two-seater car that looks more like a motorcycle than anything else. Except that it is fully enclosed and gyro-stabilized.

The gyroscopes are under the passenger compartment.


(C1 - The Gyro-Stabilized Two-Wheeled Groundcar)

The C1 prototype you see here is rear-wheel-drive for now, but the production version will be all-wheel-drive (two-wheel, if you prefer), with power provided by a hub-mounted electric motor good for 110 horsepower. Weighing in at between 800 and 900 pounds in production spec, Lit estimates a zero-to-60-mph time of around six seconds, with a 120-mph top speed and a range of 220 miles between charges thanks to the 8 kWh lithium-ion battery pack mounted in the floor. Charge times vary depending on your outlet, with a household standard 120V juicing the C1 up in around 6 hours or around 4 hours using the 220V outlet powering your dryer.

Fans of E.E. 'Doc Smith may be thinking of the two-wheeled ground-car from his 1950 novel First Lensman:

He got in. The door jammed itself gently shut. The runabout--a Dillingham eleven-forty--shot smoothly forward upon its two fat, soft tires. Half-way to the exit archway he was doing forty; he hit the steeply-banked curve leading into the lofty "street" at ninety.

Nor was there shock or strain. Motorcycle-wise, but automatically, the "Dilly" leaned against its gyroscopes at precisely the correct angle...

Update 01-Dec-2013: Compare also to the two-wheeled car from Robert Heinlein's 1940 novella The Roads Must Roll. Heinlein pretty much described this car exactly. End update.

Via Wired; thanks to Winchell Chung (aka @Nyrath of Project Rho) for the tip and the reference on this story.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 5/31/2012)

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