Here at Inhabitat we’ve seen vehicles powered by algae, poo, and magnets — but our favorite source of sustainable propulsion is human power! The HumanCar is powered by your very own kinetic force — just hop in, give it a few cranks, and you’re on your way. The vehicle was developed decades ago, but is now getting set to hit the market as a road tested — and totally street legal — car. It was recently clocked going 30 miles per hour up a hill, and it will be selling for a mere $15,000. Check out a video of the HumanCar in action after the jump!
Charles Greenwood P.E. came up with the idea for the HumanCar while sitting at a standstill in traffic in the Silicon Valley in 1968. He was looking around at all the other poor, lonely, out-of-shape people breathing in exhaust fumes and thought that there must be a better way. The first HumanCar prototype was built and traveled around California in 1972, and it has evolved greatly since then — it used to only have 3 wheels. The car is powered by a series of back and forth cranks operated by the passengers — up to four people can join in.
If four people are involved, the car can run on human power alone. With one driver the vehicle would have to employ the use of the included plug-in electric engine (in either hybrid or full electric mode) in order to maintain street speed. The engineers, however, would like to add that this is an exercise-enabled automobile, and as such it’s much more than a mode of transportation — it’s also a way to get in shape. You can reserve your HumanCar now for just a $50 placeholder fee — they’ll come to collect the rest when the car actually hits the market. The vehicle will be available for purchase next year.
Via Autoblog Green