Design Engineering

Korean electric car folds in half when parked

Mike McLeod   

General Automotive electric car electric vehicle EV

Four-wheel Armadillo-T EV designed to maximize parking, transport in dense urban centers.

13-aug-kaist-Armadillo-T-EV-360Researchers at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) have developed a foldable, compact electric vehicle Armadillo-T intended to be used as either as a personal car or part of the public transit system. Just like its South American namesake, the Armadillo-T can curl inward, shrinking its original size of 2.8 meters down to almost half (1.65 meters).

Once folded, the four-wheel-drive, all-electric car takes up only one-third of a standard Korean 5-meter parking space. In addition, the EV can be controlled from a smart phone for remote folding and navigating into odd spaces in a parking lot. The two-seater has a maximum speed of 60 km/h and can run up to 100 km on a ten-minute fast charge.

“I expect that people living in cities will eventually shift their preferences from bulky, petro-engine cars to smaller and lighter electric cars,” said Professor In-Soo Suh, Associate Professor of Graduate School for Green Transportation at the KAIST e-Mobility Laboratory. “Armadillo-T can be one of the alternatives city drivers can opt for. Particularly, this car is ideal for urban travels, including car-sharing and transit transfer, to offer major transportation links in a city. In addition to the urban application, local near-distance travels such as tourist zones or large buildings can be another example of application.”



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