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City Car

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Model of the CityCar and vehicle stack. source

CityCar is a new vehicle design for urban use under development by the MIT Media Lab.



The CityCar is a stackable electric two-passenger city vehicle. Using new technology and use models it is intended to be a new form of urban transport, rather than a replacement for existing modes.

Designed for short one-way journeys in dense urban areas Vehicle Stacks will be placed throughout the city to create an urban transportation network that takes advantage of existing infrastructure such as subway and bus lines. The stack receives incoming vehicles and electrically charges them. Similar to luggage carts at the airport, users simply take the first fully charged vehicle at the front of the stack.

The CityCar utilizes fully integrated in-wheel electric motors and suspension systems called, 'Wheel Robots'. The wheel robots eliminate the need for traditional drive train configurations like engine blocks, gear boxes, and differentials because they are self-contained, digitally controlled, and reconfigurable. It also provides all the wheel power and steering capable of 360 degrees of movement, thereby allowing for omni-directional movement. The vehicle will be able to manoeuvre in tight urban spaces and park by sideways translation.


CityCar is a project of Smart Cities at the MIT Media Lab.

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