Enough to park motorcycles
CT-1 prototype – a car for the smallest gap
05/05/2022, 09:55 AM
The CT-1 is a small vehicle that can easily be placed in a motorcycle parking lot. The highlight is a folding mechanism that allows the dwarf to shrink to one meter in width. It’s still a prototype, but the Israeli startup that dreamed up the CT-1 has big plans for small businesses.
Who would have thought that a Smart Fortwo could look really fat in a parking lot compared to another car? Probably nobody – except for Asaph Formosa. The problem of the inventor from Tel Aviv could not be solved with a small car about 1.50 meters wide from Mercedes.
“A regular compact car fits in my garage and my motorcycle next door,” says the man in his mid-40s. But Formosa never really enjoyed the bike. Too wet in the winter, and in the summer boiling under the helmet – and bringing the little ones to the nursery? Not very safe. The solution will be a full-fledged car, but only one meter wide.
The solution is ready to go. Formoza put his City Transformer on wheels with prototype builders from Roding. It is 1.58 meters high, 2.50 meters long, and only one meter wide. Looks like the tester can cough; But put your prejudices aside and let’s get into the turbulence of Munich’s traffic.
Inside is like a car
The first impression is almost the same as that of a Smart First: on the inside, the car looks more mature, just like a car. The two seats, one behind the other on the CT-1, also make room for taller people. Two small screens in the cockpit provide all the essential information, information, entertainment and connectivity to the usual applications and services. Unlike other vehicles in the L7e compact class, such as the Renault Twizy, the CT-1 is fully enclosed and air-conditioned. The 14 kWh battery under the floor and two 7.5 kW electric motors automatically provide their sufficient power, as is usual in the drivetrain. The rear-wheel drive Schmalhans can easily swim in traffic.
However, this only works because Formoza has patented a 30-speed trick: the steel beams on the left and right of the tire on which the wheels are electrically suspended can then be extended by 25cm with the push of a button. The wider track should allow for a safer grip, even at higher speeds. CT-1 speeds can reach 90 km / h. And a range of 180 kilometers should also make the car attractive to suburban commuters. The battery is fully recharged in 3.5 hours, even when connected to a household socket; On a fast charger it takes 20 minutes.
The big clock comes when parking
But the external values are more interesting, acoustically as well: the mechanism when extending the hull still buzzes, squeaks and creaks in the prototype in such a way that at first the opening mechanism is not confident. But after a few kilometers and a gritty acceleration, the feeling of insecurity was gone. The CT-1 moves like a small car over the streets of the Old Town and Mittler’s highway-like loop. Rapid lane changes hardly cause the body to tilt, but the ABS and ESP keep the overly ambitious speed ahead. The lower center of gravity – the battery pack below, the CFRP body above – allows the 450-kilogram car to sit more firmly on the road than it appears when stationary. So it also works with driving pleasure. And thanks to the foldable back seat, you can also stock up on your big weekend shopping.
The really big hour for a very small car comes when parking in a chronically crowded city: pull the chassis – and bluff across 1.20m in front of an SUV. The length of 2.50 meters, as with the original Smart, allows this mode as long as there is no obstacle, for example to pedestrians or walkways. Exiting isn’t a problem either, because the doors swing back and forth, just like a Lamborghini Aventador. Engineer Formosa also calculated that four folding artists could be accommodated in standard parking spaces. Finding a parking space is ten times easier than in a small car. “This is very interesting for car-sharing providers, paramedics or delivery services.” Formoza has already negotiated initial sales contracts with them.
15,000 vehicles planned
The CT-1 is scheduled to roll off the assembly line in Europe from 2024, and negotiations for this are also in the domestic range. 15,000 cars as annual production were initially planned – and at a price of about 16,000 euros. However, for €12,500 early enthusiasts can pre-order the car via the website. However, there is no environmental premium for cars in this category.
However, Formoza does not want to find its niche in the market as a price breaker anyway. The developer, for example, is based on the fact that the owners of the CT-1 receive special rights from city administrations. For two reasons: First, its light vehicle is particularly environmentally friendly. Because of its small size and also because it consists of only 1500 individual parts it is also particularly resource-saving in production. A conventional car consists of 10,000 parts. In addition, the narrow Stromer requires little space.
In Tel Aviv, for example, there are possibilities to be able to drive on special lanes for motorcycles. It is also in contact with major cities in Italy, France and Germany in order to open streets or parking spaces that prohibit entry for regular-sized cars. Whether these negotiations with management are running as smoothly as the technology in the CT-1? The little one deserves sympathy.