Local Motors is crowdsourcing a new, lightweight sports car platform

Arizona-based crowdsourcer Local Motors is planning a pair of new, community-driven lightweight sports cars.

You may remember the company’s name from the Rally Fighter off-road vehicle, which was recently featured in Transformers: Age of Extinction. It basically looks like a Camaro body bolted onto an F-150’s frame, but its styling is oddly appealing. If the odd aesthetics don’t pique your curiosity, however, the V8 power and tube chassis might. It was also built as an electric car.

As is the company’s style, Local Motors sourced the Rally Fighter’s design by collaborating with members of its online automotive community. By using 3D printing, micro-manufacturing, and co-creation, Local Motors constructs cars with input from potential buyers, who can then vote on their favorite designs.

Automobile Magazine reports that new speedster platform is on the way, and it will birth at least two lightweight, track-bred sports cars akin to the Ariel Atom or Caterham Seven.

A “clothed,” road-going version will be usable on public roads, and will feature a turbocharged, 200-plus-horsepower four-cylinder engine on the base model. It will follow a front engine, rear-wheel drive layout.

The other, “naked” version, which will be developed first, will be a completely stripped out track car that saves weight by eliminating body panels. Both cars will have a manual transmission and fully independent suspension.

We don’t know what the car will look like yet because the company is still accepting sketches, renderings, and suggestions. In fact, nearly every component of the car will be voted on online, and the winning designers typically win some cash for their troubles.

The engine and transmission will likely be borrowed from existing production cars, as they were on the Rally Fighter: the off-roading standout uses the 6.2-liter LS3 V8 from the Chevrolet Corvette and Camaro.

Local Motors doesn’t just create some of the world’s most unique designs; it’s one of the most divergent car companies, period. We look forward to watching the new sports car platform develop over the coming months.


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