In September at the annual meeting of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials in Atlanta, Jay Rogers, CEO and co-founder of LM Industries, discussed how technology – especially 3D printing – is spurring transportation to evolve at a “faster and faster pace.”
Rogers explained during his presentation that making “low speed” self-driving vehicles first will “change way people view autonomy [and] enable ways to change laws. By traveling under 20 mph, we can take the place of those one to three-mile transit trips that comprise 80 percent of the 600 million daily vehicle trips in this country.”
He added that 3D printing will also dramatically change how vehicles of all stripes can and will be built. “We can make a vehicle five times faster with 100 times less capital,” Rogers pointed out, noting that Local Motors can now “print” the vehicle chassis in roughly 10 hours, with the wheels and electric propulsion system added afterwards.
“The automotive industry today works on a seven-year development cycle,” he added. “We at Local Motors propose a six-month development cycle.”