For this year’s LA Design Challenge the Japan-based Subaru Global Design Team has created an original concept very much in theme with the contest brief: “Biomimicry & Mobility 2025: Nature’s Answer to Human Challenges.”
The designers’ goal was to create a new, affordable and fun personal mobility vehicle capable of innovate the man-vehicle relationship in a revolutionary way.
As its name spelling suggests, the SUBA-ROO features a propulsion method inspired by the efficient yet powerful jumping motions of kangaroos. To achieve this, the design team conceived a distinctive one-legged configuration.
The jumping motion is enabled by actuators powered by two integrated motors; the motion energy is stored and released in the “synthetic tendon” of the leg, and a KERS system converts the excess kinetic energy and stores it in the onboard battery.
The motion is stabilized through the “Gyro Tail”, an element that integrates an elastic wind-up metal tail, a counterweight, a fly-wheel, a solar panel and a multi-information touch screen.
Another distinctive feature of the SUBA-ROO is its wearability: thanks to its clever layout, the vehicle can be worn by the driver and then easily folded to be stored in a closet when not in use.
The vehicle is also fitted with additional technology, such as the Eye-Sight safety system, which scans the surroding environment for possible obstacles through cameras integrated in the hand grips and warns the user through messages displayed on the AR monitor in the headset.
- Design Team: Masashi Kaneda, Fabian Kreis, Yohei Noshiro, David Cohen
(Source: LA Auto Show)