Can a 3D-printed car enter production and actually become street-legal? That’s what Local Motors hopes to achieve with the new, all-electric LM3D, which is based on the Strati concept that was live-printed at the SEMA Show in Las Vegas last year.
The company plans to release several new models in the LM3D series throughout 2016 while pursuing federal crash testing and highway certifications. While presales of the cars are expected to begin next spring with a targeted MSRP of $53,000 USD, manufacturing and delivery of the vehicles are expected in early 2017.
According to the Local Motors website, the LM3D is currently using a blend of 80% ABS plastic and 20% carbon fibre. The steering and powertrain components are supplied by various OEMs. A topless, buggy-style model and a sporty variant will be available, each offering numerous customization options. Specs and performance figures remain unknown, although you should know that the Strati concept featured a Renault Twizy motor and promised a range of 240 kilometres and a top speed of 65 km/h.
But, will the LM3D be safe? All signs point to crash tests being fully completed by the end of 2016 including all certifications needed to get 3D-printed cars on the road. Local Motors’ goal is to make 3D-printed cars safer than traditionally manufactured cars.