What’s got two wheels and hauls a dozen people to work?
If Montreal-based industrial designer Bing Xiao Liu has his way, it could be his Siroco concept bus, as seen on Imaginactive.org.
Frankly, this thing looks like the answer to a question nobody asked. So, the designer made up some questions of his own, such as: Why not build a bus that can take corners quickly? Why not build a bus with improved aerodynamics? Why not build a bus that takes up less road space?
Liu’s design calls for the bus to be balanced by a gyroscope system, similar to that seen in creations from Lit Motors, or the recently-unveiled Honda Riding Assist technology. BMW’s Next 100 concept also uses a similar self-balancing system. It would be battery-powered, and would be controlled by an auto-pilot system. Liu reckons the onboard battery pack could be programmed to shift position to compensate for the weight changes of unevenly distributed passengers.
You can find more details at Imaginactive’s story here.
Will this thing ever be built? We’d highly doubt it. Just like sci-fi stories of the 1950s were wrong when they predicted we’d all be taking flying cars to the office in a matter of decades, the current crop of vehicle designers predicting a future of self-balancing autonomous vehicles are probably wrong too. But maybe Liu’s on to something; we’ll likely have to wait a good amount of time to find out either way. For now, his design is just a drawing, with no working concept vehicle, and that’s probably how it will stay. That’s been the fate of most of the other similar concepts we’ve seen—even the designers who got as far as a working prototype have yet to bring their machines to market.
But, we can think of at least one good thing that would come out of this design, if it hit the streets: If it really was narrow enough to fit between cars, we can see a sudden spike in public interest in the legalization of lanesplitting.