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Startup company develops a shuttle bus via 3D printer

The self-driving Olli bus of the startup Local Motors has survived a simulated traffic accident at a speed of 40 km / h frontally against a wall. The manufacturer wants to show that even printed structures are stable enough for practical use.

The glass on the sides of the shuttle Olli broke, the suspension buckled and a few small pieces of bodywork flew through the air, but otherwise the bus has survived the accident structurally well with 40 km / h, even though it is 3D-printed parts. Meanwhile, the manufacturer uses laminated glass that does not break into a thousand pieces. At the second attempt with 5 km / h the bus did not break seriously.

The shuttle, called Olli, is manufactured by Arizona-based startup Local Motors. The vehicle is designed for low speeds and transported a few people autonomously to the destination.

Local Motors chief Jay Rogers told The Verge that the video footage was released to make users worry that autonomous shuttles are dangerous vehicles. The videos are exclusive to The Verge. “Many people just ask, ‘Well, is it safe or not, how do I drive around in something printed by a Makerbot?'” Rogers told The Verge. “The answer is that not only is it just as safe, it will be safer in the future.”

Local Motors has been working on 3D printed vehicles for about five years. The Olli is now printed in about ten hours, according to the company.

Local Motors tested Olli in a suburb of the US capital Washington and in Berlin-Schöneberg.

Published inStartupsTechnology

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