Friday, June 3, 2011

Cars made of strange stuff

Cars made of strange stuff

Cars made of strange stuff.Everyone knows you make cars out of steel  – or aluminium, or carbon-fiber composites. But for some, conventional substances just don't satisfy. Some engineers have built cars out of crazy stuff like hemp, paper and foam.  Come along for a strange journey to a land of cars that crumble, rustle, stretch and squash.

Play-Doh Chevrolet
This English city was recently treated to the extraordinary sight of a bright blue life-size Play-Doh replica of the Chevrolet Orlando,when it was parked in the street as a publicity stunt. It took model-makers two weeks to build the car, which broke a world record.

There's eco-conscious and there's eco-combobulated. The BamGoo definitely falls into the latter category. Japan's Kyoto University is behind this daft single-seater electric car, whose body is made entirely of woven bamboo.

Ford's hemp prototype
Henry Ford might have had something strange in his pipe when he came up with the idea for this 1941 prototype, which was made of resin-stiffened hemp fiber .He was so confident of the car's strength; he put it through a remarkable test.

BMW Gina
The BMW Gina had spandex bodywork that could do an amazing thing at the press of a button

Velorex Oskar
Ever felt a burning desire to drive a Boy Scout frame tent? That's pretty much what thousands of people in this Eastern European country did in the 1950s, '60s and even '70s. The Velorex was a sub-Skoda people's car whose bodywork was made of canvas stretched over a metal frame.

Plastic Trabant 601
No, the urban myths are wrong: Trabant never manufactured a car made of cardboard. In reality, Trabant engineers used Duroplast, for the Trabant 601 because of a chronic shortage of a key material. , which made the car the first of its kind.

Rinspeed eXasis
The Swiss automaker Rinspeed collaborated with a team from this company to make the eXasis , which it debuted at a high-profile auto show in 2007. It was made of a clear plastic material . Its body and floor were completely transparent, as were the seats, armrests and instrument displays. It was unveiled on a momentous anniversary of first all-plastic car.

Chrysler CCV
Chrysler's 1996 CCV was made of an inexpensive recycled material, which means it can be cheaply manufactured in developing countries . Chrysler admitted that it pulled apart this French car to get inspiration for the CCV

Foam Spira
A team based in this East Asian country designed the Spira with pedestrian safety in mind. About 90 percent of the car's body is made of out foam. The motto for the car is catchy. Wonder why they designed a safety car with only three wheels.

Musa 5th Avenue
Leather interiors are a staple of the modern luxury car. Lancia took it one step further with the
Musa 5th Avenue shown at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show. The roof and tailgate also were covered in leather

DeLorean DMC-12
Unpainted brushed stainless steel sounded fabulously exotic back when DeLorean made its DMC-12.The down-to-earth reality was a surface that scratched like chalk and was impossible to repair if dented. DeLorean's suggestion: if a panel gets damaged, just replace it.

GM Firebird II
No car sums up the space-age optimism of the 1950s better than GM's Firebird II of 1956 .It remains the only car ever with a body made entirely of titanium. Predating DeLorean by 25 years, its designer left the body unpainted with a brushed, lustrous finish.

Balsa Humvee
This might sound crazy, but the U.S. Army built this Humvee out of balsa wood and other lightweight materials with safety in mind. The idea was that the lighter bodywork would allow extra armor plating to be fitted to counter one of the deadliest threats in the Iraq war.

Marcos Xylon
With a background in aeronautics, Frank Costin really did know what he was doing when he designed the Marcos Xylon.This very early Xylon  was made almost entirely from mahogany, spruce and plywood.

Skoda Fabia cake
Skoda's memorable 2007 TV ad featured a legion of bakers constructing a Fabia out of sponge cake.From its sugar-dusted roof to its treacle-filled engine, the car was made entirely out of baking ingredients, including fudge, caster sugar and jam.

Virgil Exner 's extraordinary Mercer-Cobra of 1965 shined, not with gold, but with this less precious metal . The green-tinged stuff was applied to much of the body, interior, engine and wheels. Even the brake discs were made of copper.

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