Innovation That Matters

Electric motorbike-car hybrid uses gyroscopes to stay upright upon collision

Mobility & Transport

The Lit C-1 combines the car and motorbike in a compact two-wheeler that features electronic gyroscopes to keep it upright, even upon collision.

Hybrid transportation has been featured on these pages numerous times, most recently in the form of the PAL V-ONE — a ‘flying car’ developed in the Netherlands, mixing automobile and gyrocopter technology. The Lit C-1 is another example, combining the car and motorbike in a compact two-wheeler that features gyroscopes to keep it upright, even upon collision. Aiming to provide the convenience of a motorcycle as well as the safety of a car, the C-1 will be a streamlined vehicle for two people (one in the front, one in the back), designed for short trips around urban areas. The entire car is powered electrically using batteries that provide 200 miles for each full charge, while 40kW electric motors on the wheels allow gyroscopes located under the body floor to spin at more than 1,300 lb/ft of torque. This system means that the car remains balanced when stopping and it would take a large sideways force for it to be knocked over. In the case of such an event, the chassis provides the protection not found in standard motorbikes. On top of these features, the vehicle is equipped with connectivity to smartphones to warn drivers of busy traffic and bad weather conditions that could affect their journey, as well as offer alternative routes. The vehicle is still in the testing stages so won’t be available until 2014, but the following video gives an idea of the car in operation: The C-1 is an eco-friendly mode of transport that allows users to weave in and out of traffic like a motorbike with less risk of accident. Could similar hybrids bring about new innovations in the automotive field?



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