3D printing companies have been experimenting printing cars since long. However, they were not able to 3D print an entire car, except for interior components. As 3D printing technology evolved, they were able to achieve their goals and took 3D printing automotive industry to a whole new level. We bring you the list of top 25 incredible 3D printed cars that are futuristic and conceptual.
Car fanatics would be able to drive LM3D, a 3D printed car, in 2017. LM3D’s body panel, chassis, and 75% of the components are 3D printed using ABS and carbon fiber materials in the raio of 80:20. The printing is done at Knoxville microfactory using BAAM 3D printers. Local Motors is planning to roll out the car in a series and its first model will be named ‘Swim,’ which is designed by Kevin Lo, production designer and winner of the 3D printed car design contest. The car is said to be safer in comparision with other cars manufactured in the traditional way. The company has plans to finish the crash testing for the car by December 2016.
Built by the US Department of Energy’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility, the 3D printed car was first revealed at the Detroit International Auto Show. Big Area Addictive Manufacturing (BAAM) Machine, which 3D printing Australia, is also equipped with was used to 3D print strong and lightweight composite parts. Fitted with new engine, battery, fuel cell, hybrid design system, the car was manufactured at Oak Ridge National Laboratories.
- Blade by Divergent Microfactories:
Blade is the world’s first 3D printed supercar by Divergent Microfactories. Lookswise, it is similar to LM3D. What makes them apart is that LM3D is printed by BAAM, and Blade by DMLS. Moreover, the outer shell design of Blade is futuristic compared to LM3D’s exterior. The difference is because Blade is made of several “Nodes,” wherein carbon fiber tubing are joined with 3D printed aluminum joints to build the car’s chassis 90% lighter than a conventional car.
This iconic 3D printed electric car was the result of the winning design by Italian designer Michele Anoe in a contest and was built right from scratch. One of the surprising things about Strati is, it was printed in just 44 hours, excluding milling and assembling. Though its wheels, battery and electronic devices are not 3D printed, the car represented a promising future for 3D car printing.
EDAG, the German engineering design studio has been experimenting since long to bring out 3D printing car. The first of its kind, EDAG’s Light Cocoon was presented in Geneva Motor Show and is considered as a dynamic sports car. This vehicle enhanced with artificial body parts dons an attractive outer skin panel with texture to endure the onslaught of weather. So with the looks, it also offers longevity. Above that, it is equipped with backlight technology that makes the car a treat to watch when in motion.
- C16 Short Distance Vehicle:
Currently having no plans for production, the Street Scooter C16 3D printed car has components like wheel arches, bumpers, panels and interior parts designed in 3D form. Printed by Stratasys Object 1000 3D printer, which is also used for creating 3D printing architectural models, the car is being built by experts from Aachen University.
C:IDEAS, one of the experts in the field of 3D printing, has created a concept car in the form of Lotus 340R. It is using 3D scanning technologies to make and construction replacement parts. Since 3D printing of an entire car was not feasible, the company constructed 40 replacement components for the car.
Currently in physical concept, EDAG’s Soulmate was first unveiled at CES 2016. A collaborative project between auto futurists and Bosch, the car is a blend of smart system and can be controlled by gestures, helping drivers stay focused on the road. The interior of the Soulmate is completely 3D printed.
EDAG showed the real power of additive manufacturing when it revealed its innovative vehicle structure in Geneva Motor Show in 2014. It also showed that additive manufacturing has reached to a stage where producing the body of the vehicle in one piece through one single process is possible. They name their model vehicle structure “EDAG Genesis.” The design of Genesis is inspired by the bone structure of a turtle and its shell that gives it shape, protection, and comfort.
- Bloodhound SSC prototype by Renishaw
Renishaw has applied its expertise in additive manufacturing and created models of parts for the supersonic car made by a British company. Since lighter weight of vehicles helps in speed, Bloodhound Company Ltd. has planned to use 3D printed parts in the supersonic car with an aim to cross 1,000 mpg speed marks.
Using Stratasys Fortus 3D printer, Urbee is the first prototype car built entirely with additive process. it’s a 3 wheeled car/motorcycle designed by the engineers at KOR Ecologic. It was designed by Jim Kor who wanted to create an environmentally friendly and fuel-efficient car. Kor followed an interesting step when making the car’s model. He first made half the model and then asked his team to hold a mirror to it. The mirror gave him the image that helped him visualize the look of the entire car.
Shell, in association with auto designer Murray had launched Project M in the beginning of 2016. It’s a concept car which Shell aims to make it the most energy-efficient city car. The unique thing about this car is that everything from the engine to lubricants was designed simultaneously to optimize its performance. The car is equipped with three cylinder 660-cc petrol engine that generate 43 bhp and 64 NM of torque. To help in improving acceleration time, Shell used 3D printed components to make it lighter.
Daihatsu is introducing new Copen with 2-door convertible. To give it a different look, it has called local designers and artists to create “Effect Skins” that can be customized and 3D printed. The designs will be 3D printed for adding decorative features to the car. It is a different kind of marketing adopted by the company to enable its customers obtains customized products. Once the order for the parts is placed by the customers, Daihatsu will 3D print and ships them in two week’s time.
- Sanya – First 3D printed Chinese Car
Sanya SI Hai, a local 3D printing company based in Sanya, China, built a 3D printed car and named it “Sanya” after the Sanya city. The 500 kg electric-powered car has just the exterior of the car 3D printed and not the interior. The company’s CEO said that since plastic filaments are used in the car, the vehicle is much lighter than a car built with metal. Hence, it will help in saving energy in the future. The entire 3D printing process for the car took 500 kg of filaments.
uBox is a concept car from Toyota designed for Z generation. Its unique features include reconfigurable interior. This means you can change the car into a mobile office or a recreational vehicle. You can remove the seats and place on the lower floor. All this is possible because of the 3D printed vents, dashboard, and door trim. You can finally use the car as a multi-utility vehicle. The car will be produced as a joint venture between Toyota and students of the Clemson University International Centre for Automotive Research, South Carolina.
Kia unveiled its concept car this year at Detroit auto show and called it “Telluride,” The special thing about this car is that its final model is 3D printed parts. The steering wheel, dashboard, and door panels are all 3D printed. The car grabbed lots of eyeballs during the auto show with is modern and cool looks.
- EXP 10 Speed 6 by Bentley:
First seen in 2015 Geneva Motor Show, this hybrid concept car will go on sale from 2018. Bentley used Stratasys 3D printers to create different types of functional parts for it. With micro-scale precision, each of the car’s exterior part is a good example of what additive manufacturing can do for high performance cars in the future. Bentley has revived its classic mesh grille with a new design that features complex geometrical lines with varying depth. Even the exhausts, side vents, door handles are given more refined looks.
- NTU Venture 8 – Singapore’s first 3D printed car
The students of Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore built Asia’s first urban solar electric car by assembling 3D printed body shell for the car. For the car’s body, the students had to 3D print over 150 parts.
- FNX13 by Changsha University of Science & Technology:
In 2013, 40 students from the School of Automobile and Mechanical Engineering in Changsha built a race car with 3D printed parts. The car was designed to compete in Formula Student China (FSC) car race. For optimal acceleration, and to build a lighter car, the students 3D printed the car’s steering wheel as well as the air intake systems.
- Eco-Car by Iron Warriors:
Eco-car was a functional prototype built to participate in Shell Eco-Marathon. It’s a fuel-efficient tiny car from a team of engineers of Poland named Iron Warriors. The light weight Eco car had printed parts built using Zortrax M200 FDM 3D printer.
- Racing Car by KU e-Racing:
E-Racing team from Kingston University, UK created several parts for their lightweight race car to win the Formula Student engineering competition in 2013 and 2014. The team printed the parts for the race car using 3D printer as well as the 3D printing material manufactured by Stratasys. The 3D printed parts helped the race car in enduring the brutal pace and extreme heat of motor-racing.
- Eco-Car by Euregiorunners:
This was yet another Eco-Marathon Europe contender and was built by students from Zuyd University of Applied Sciences in the Netherlands. Students used Ultimaker’s desktop 3D printers for dashboard, steering wheel, mirrors and door handles. The main aim of going with 3D printing for the car was to make it light and cover maximum distance in minimal energy. Moreover, 3D printing helped the students in working on a tight budget.
- Formic Acid Sustainable Transportation by Team FAST:
Though hybrid and electric cars had a good market, regenerated energy for transportation was lacking. To boost the development of sustainable vehicles, 23 students of the Technical University in Eindhoven joined together and formed Team FAST. The word ‘Fast’ is for Formic Acid Sustainable Transportation. This team had earlier developed a model that operated with formic acid. Team FAST created various components using a 3D printer. To get quality printing materials, they met Jan Willem Slijkoord, who provided them 3D printing filaments. With the help of Slijkoord, Team FAST got a 3D printer from Ultimaker and the functional model was unveiled on 14th January 2016.
- Aston Martin DB4 replica by Ivan Sentch:
Ivan Sentch, who is a programmer by profession and hails from Auckland , created a large 3D printed mold using a Solidoodle 3D printer. The mold developed for Aston Martin DB4 was used to make fibreglass body for the iconic vehicle which had engine, electrical system, suspension, universal joints, and driveshaft of Nissan Skyline built in 1933.
- Mercedes-Benz DTW Le Mans 2030 by Martin Chatelier:
This concept car of Mercedes-Benz is designed by Martin Chatelier from France, who is a student of transportation design. The f3D printing will be laced with an exclusive air powering system, graphene body, and a separate 3D tire-printing system. The Michelin 3D Tire Print System, which is a group of small nozzles, is installed behind all the four tires of the car. When the car moves ahead, the nozzles spray gum onto the tires. The gum helps the tires in re-surfacing when they get worn off.
There is an immense development in 3D printing technology used for making parts of the car. 3D printing Melbourne companies have been offering effective services for the auto industry to build such concept cars that will hit on roads in the near future.