Motorcycle car

Riding a motorcycle has advantages such as far better fuel economy, small footprint and the ability to weave through traffic but these are outweighed by the necessity of comfort and cargo capacity and most of all…safety.

San Francisco based Lit Motors aims to change that with C1 – the first prototype of a fully electric, fully enclosed two-wheeled two-seater from Lit Motors. The production version of which is to arrive in 2014, complete with airbags, seat belt and a smartphone-connected infotainment system.


But that not the cool part. Besides the function of riding through traffic like a regular motorcycle, what sets the C1 apart from other vehicles is its capability to stay upright at a standstill without help from the driver or a third wheel. This is possible due to two gyroscopes underneath the passenger compartment. In the final production form, the pair of gyros will max out at around 1,300 pound-feet, enough to keep the C1 vertical while stopped, at steady-state cruising and planted to the road at a maximum lean angle of 45 degrees.

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The production version will be all-wheel-drive (two-wheel, if you prefer), with power provided by a hub-mounted electric motor good for 110 horsepower. Weighing in at between 800 and 900 pounds in production spec, Lit estimates a 0-60 mph time of around six seconds, with a 120-mph top speed and a range of 220 miles between charges thanks to the 8 kWh lithium-ion battery pack mounted in the floor. Charge times vary depending on the outlet, with a household standard 120V juicing the C1 up in around 6 hours or around 4 hours using the 220V outlet.

Measuring in around 115 inches long and 40 inches wide, the C1 seems larger on the inside than its dimensions suggest. While the C1 concept Lit Motors has been showing (built by the same team behind the Light Cycles in the movie – Tron) shows seating for two, the back seat however is more suited for luggage than a comfortable seat for another person.

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The company hopes to have an initial run of production vehicles to be available at a price of about US$24,000 by late 2013, with that price going down to $16,000 once full production gets under way in 2014.

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