Jorge Chapa

GM and Segway Announce Project P.U.M.A!

by , 04/07/09

Project P.U.M.A (which stands for Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility), PUMA, Segway PUMA, Segway P.U.M.A, Project PUMA, Segway GM, Battery powered vehicle

In one of the most incredible transportation announcements to date, General Motors and Segway have just released pics of a new battery powered two-wheeled vehicle! The vehicle, known as Project P.U.M.A, is designed to allow for easy movement through congested urban streets. A belayed April Fool’s joke? or a preview of General Motor’s future?

Project P.U.M.A (which stands for Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility), PUMA, Segway PUMA, Segway P.U.M.A, Project PUMA, Segway GM, Battery powered vehicle

Project P.U.M.A (which stands for Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility)
, is effectively an enclosed scooter capable of achieving speeds of around 35 miles per hour, for a maximum distance of roughly 35 miles per charge.  The design is being unveiled as we type.

P.U.M.A uses technology developed for the Segway personal vehicle, originally designed by Dean Kamen. This allows the vehicle to operate using two wheels only, though the vehicles has been fitted with training wheels which are quite helpful when stopping.  GM hopes to convince a number of cities of colleges to set up P.U.M.A travel lanes. The vehicles are intended to drive automatically — almost by themselves — allowing human passengers to relax and sit back while their P.U.M.A navigates traffic. They are equipped with a wireless system to allow for easy navigation, and avoid traffic congestion.

Project P.U.M.A (which stands for Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility), PUMA, Segway PUMA, Segway P.U.M.A, Project PUMA, Segway GM, Battery powered vehicle

While we must admit to being excited by this stunning new technology, particularly by a car manufacturer such as GM, we do have to wonder… why not just ride a bike? If this new design is successful, you can expect to see it on sale by around 2012.

+ GM And Segway Join Forces To Reinvent Urban Transportation

+ GM, Segway team up on 200-mpg 2-seater

Related Posts

LEAVE A COMMENT

or your inhabitat account below

Let's make sure you're a real person:


8 Comments

  1. bobbyhawk July 19, 2011 at 4:32 am

    First, I am not a “Green Person” I am practicable and a conservative however. I am aware that there is no such thing as a city stretcher which can be used to expand the existing size and shape of a cities foot print.

    With more people attempting to access each US city and with the price of gasoline ever increasing and the supply dwindling, we need to take immediate steps to change the way we access and travel within our US cities. Immediate change does not mean some pie in the sky idea such as this GM toy, We already have established motorcycles and scooters in abundance. For each subcompact car, one can park 4 to 6 scooters. Its simply the logical, available choice.

    The problem at this juncture is the access routes which mix scooter and motor vehicle traffic and the use of the scooter as a year-round solution. When I say scooter, we should include Motorcycles of all three types, Street bikes, Cruisers, and sport bikes. Its the combination of these two wheel and three wheel motorcycles, which is the only immediate and cost effective solution to our daily commute. I know, I drive a 125 cc Yamaha scooter daily on a 32 mile one way commute and return between 85 and 95 mpg (depends on fuel type).

    There are a vast amount of solutions for curing the traffic problem in the US cities but none so immediately effective as configuring our cities as scooter and motorcycle friendly area. This will mean areas which separate access between cars and trucks (motor vehicles) and Scooters and Motorcycles. We will need to work out the details of a mother or dad of 2 to 4 delivering their children to school then taking their scooter or motorcycle to work (single person transport Vehicle or SPTV). We will NEVER move away from the need for people to move with freedom at their need or whim. Because of this we will need transportation solutions which are vastly smaller in size that our current solutions. Further, families which are already strapped down financially, can little afford a $20 to 40 k smart car or hybrid. The answer lies in the $2k to $6k scooter or motorcycle.

    Just think folks if we could move 30% America into this solution effectively over the next 4 – 6 years. Our fuel usage will be reduced by upwards of 25% (360m/gal/day is the current rate), that would mean a 90 million gallon reduction in fuel usage each day. (360m to 270m) and if we work on making solutions for year round access, we will encourage more and more users to participate.

    The government is not going to do anything about this issue. They see the future in terms of their revenue hogging rapid rail and commuter trains, where they command control and vast revenues to operate and inefficient train-bus system. This mode of transportation crowds vast volumes of people together each day, causing any number of issues from health related to crime. Common rail-bus commuting is simply not the answer. People need their individual space and personal safety, therefore the smaller vehicle is the answer, we simply need to tell our government within the city what they will do to accommodate the commuters (the people). Stop the craziness of these multi billion dollar rapid rail programs which are limited in size and scope and move toward an immediate and permanent solution which is inner city SPTV access and parking. This is not pie in the sky stuff, its simply planning the inner city and its access waypoints to be more friendly to scooters and motorcycles which already exist…and further planning for year round solutions for those same vehicles. This is not rocket science, its simply planning

  2. dmitri April 9, 2009 at 2:55 pm

    This is either a joke or they are spitting in the face of the entire nation… Is this what GM spent 14 billion dollars taken from our pocket for? This would be a great solution for disabled people if it is considered as new model of the wheelchair… or for the spoiled kids of wealthy parents (GM’s executives, vice-presidents, top-management, etc. who along with oil companies brought our country to the present shameful situation ). It’s a new toy, not a serious innovation or concept! These people from GM are being especially shameless and irresponsible because they made this announcement right after Tesla Motor Company’s presentation of Tesla S car which is a real technological and conceptual breakthrough. If we really want CHANGES we (our government ) should stop supporting these betrayers and let them die. Such companies like Tesla Motor are the best alternative solution in term of investments and jobs.

  3. Trajkociklista April 9, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    It’s interesting that they always just HAVE TO make people sit upright in something.
    If the main idea is to make it GREEN why don’t they use something more efficient,like a recumbent concept !?
    A Velomobile if they really want some weather protection and efficiency.
    It’s the most efficient vehicle on earth, so why not use one.
    Instead that make a contraption like this, with a high center of gravity,and enormous wind drag.

    It’s right up there with making an hybrid SUV monster, that is supposed to be “green” .. yeah right.
    If they really wand to make something green,they first make it efficient, which means good aerodynamics as a first thing.

  4. mindfrieze April 9, 2009 at 9:52 am

    In three of the four pictures above, the PUMA is shown in dedicated bicycle or pedestrian areas. As a motorized vehicle capable of speeds reaching 35mph, it should never, ever be allowed is such areas. It\\\’s a car, albeit a “green” one with a small physical & ecological footprint, and it bothers me that GM & Segway are presumably positioning it as replacement for walking and biking rather than as replacement for traditional cars.

  5. jeanX April 8, 2009 at 12:58 pm

    I drive a power chair and consider any vehicle such as this, to be too dangerous to use.
    Anything that goes 35 mph, without a lot of protection, in unthinkable.

  6. JournalRhythm April 8, 2009 at 2:04 am

    there’s a new concept in the automotive business
    it’s 2 seated, 2 wheeled, and too ambitious
    General Motors fearing their time is over
    is desperate to meet their innovation quota

    partnered with Segway trying to make headway
    came up with something just a little more deadly
    works like the other one except that you sit
    and ride around praying that you don’t get hit

    To listen to me rap my opinion, visit:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=64rpjlcf23Q

  7. Leo April 7, 2009 at 10:56 pm

    Hey it’s not that bad.

    I personally would prefer to bike or walk, but it seems like this could be a great tool to expand transportation agencies “outreach” programs.

  8. jpdesign31 April 7, 2009 at 3:11 pm

    Wasn’t the Segway supposed to \”reinvent urban transportation”? This is why GM deserves to go out of business. Their idea of innovation is to take a commercially unsuccessful technology and add seats to it. Are you kidding me? And they\’ll probably add cupholders too. Why not just ride a bike, even a tandem bike for two, instead of wasting the materials and resources needed to produce the vehicle and batteries? I hope this was an April Fool’s joke.

  • Read Inhabitat

  • Search Categories

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

  • Browse by Keyword

get the free Inhabitat newsletter

Submit this form
popular today
all time
most commented
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
What are you looking for? (Solar, HVAC, etc.)
Where are you located?