Arizona-based Local Motors has succeeded in creating the world’s first 3D-printed car at the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) in Chicago. Called the Strati, the 3D-printed car’s design was chosen from several hundred submissions, with the final design being printed in one piece using direct digital manufacturing (DDM) processes.
The entire printing process takes 44 hours to complete, but at the end the car is only composed of 40 components versus the thousands of parts that today’s road cars are made out of. The entire body, seats and windshield are printed by a 3D printer and are made out of carbon fiber and plastic.
“This brand-new process disrupts the manufacturing status quo, changes the consumer experience and proves that a car can be born in an entirely different way,” said Local Motors CEO John B. Rogers, Jr.
Not all of the Strati’s parts are 3D printed, since it’s powered by an electric powertrain that’s been borrowed from Europe’s Renault Twizy. Local Motors says that other parts, like the battery, wiring and suspension are sourced from a variety of third-party suppliers. Following its debut in Chicago, Local Motors plans to put the Strati on the market, but pricing has yet to be released.