The Armadillo-T, a foldable, shell-like electric vehicle that reduces its size when parked, proves that necessity truly is the mother of invention. But would you really want to drive an Armadillo?
That's the name of the experimental vehicle from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) in Daejeon, south of Seoul. They've called it the Armadillo because it can disappear somewhat into its own shell.
Reuters says it's part of a trend of developing environmentally friendly vehicles for urban spaces. The car can travel 100 km (62 miles) on a 10-minute charge and has a maximum speed of 60 km per hour (37 miles per hour).
You can park one anywhere. When it comes time to park, the rear of the vehicle folds over the front, almost reducing its body length in half to just 65 inches.
"They can be parked in every corner of the street and buildings, be it apartments, shopping malls or supermarkets," said Suh In-soo, a professor at Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology who led development of the car.
Want to see it in action? Their video demonstrating the prototype has been viewed more than 780,000 times on YouTube:
I like the practicality of it, but I'm not sure it isn't better suited for college campuses or retirement communities where golf carts fit the needs nicely. Would the Armadillo driver walk away from a collision with a NY taxi?