- IDEA 2011 Submission
BFA Industrial design final project 2010
- "The Solis is a solar powered commuter vehicle designed to challenge how we think about parking in highly populated areas."
Semi-transparent solar panels on doors and roofing generate electric power, which is stored in the battery. Alternatively (if plugged up) the electric power is sent back to the grid with money in return, as electric companies are forced by law to pay you at the same rate as they charge.
Due to the size of the Solis, two cars can now park in one regular parking space. The Solis plugs up with a retractable power cord to the parking meter and will provide the city with electricity through its solar panels and thereby paying for parking. When there’s lack of sunlight the parking meter acts as a changing station in exchange for payment.
The Solis would be for anyone that commutes in highly populated areas but especially the “Eco chic”, which values the “hip factor” and the fashion statement equally to its environmental footprint.
- The Solis combines the freedom of a motorcycle with the comfort and safety of a car to create new and better ways of commuting and parking in highly populated areas. Through market and user research examining competitor products such as the smart car it was found that perception and reality are two different things. The smart car showed incredible results in safety tests but is still not perceived to be a safe car, which effects sales negatively, especially in the US.
- The Solis uses the same wheelbase as the smart car but with a visually lower center of gravity. Both passengers are placed in the center of the car protected by the wheels, which gives by far the best protection in a crash. Parking in cities and other highly populated areas is always a problem. The Solis is combustion free, takes up less space, contributes to the city with electricity but most importantly it makes people feel better about the commuting experience.One of the findings was that the commuters themselves don’t recognize the problem that they drive a 5-seat car by themselves 89% of the time, driving that type of car has become a commodity.
- The challenge was to create an understanding of everyday commuting and what problems people encounter, such as driving and parking in highly populated areas.
The most difficult part was to make a huge difference without making major changes to the layout and accessibility of the city itself. Parking spaces are split into two simply by some paint and the regular parking meter is transformed so the Solis is hooked up to the grid.