There are quite a few ideas and concepts floating around out there to build compact, mobile and versatile electric cars for the city. We have smart with their fortwo and forfour EVs, Spiri, and Amber Mobility, just to name a few.
Today, we wanted to share with you a pretty neat concept coming out of Prague: the 4ekolka. What makes this car most interesting is not that it’s a battery-powered car, but the fact that it is 3D printed.
According to Hybrid (who gave us the heads up about this project), Petr Chládek, the 4ekolka designer and architect of the 3D printed car, made some remarks about how the focus of his project is to target current city transportation solutions because they “are not good.”
Additionally, in reference to a European study that they cite, most drivers travel around 50 km (~31 miles) a day, which is mainly back and forth to work. Chládek then commented (loosely translated) on this fact with the following:
“For the city we need something small, inexpensive, safe, usable year-round, for a maximum of two people, with a max. speed of 55 km/h (~34 mph).”
His proposed solution? The 3D printed 4ekolka:
Presumably, the 3D printed route was chosen because the concept was “built with maximum emphasis on weight reduction and consumption.” With that being said, if I understand correctly, the cost to build the prototype was around CZK 300,000 (~$12,000), with about half of that cost coming from the batteries and battery management system (BMS). Besides that, it is still unclear on the actual technical specifications on how long it took to build (3d printing is time-consuming), the materials used, or projected production information.
But, luckily, we do have some basic details on what the vehicle should offer once it is customer ready:
- 55 km/h (~34 mph) top speed
- LiFePO4 batteries with a capacity of 200Ah @ 48V totaling around 9.6 kWh
- ~200 km (124 miles) per charge
- And where most EVs consume between 200-300 Wh on average, the 4ekolka will consume about 100 Wh
As you can see from the specs, it’s not a performance machine nor even suited for highway driving, but it should be able to get one to two people from point A to point B perfectly fine in the city. Much like other compact EVs, the 4ekolka could potentially be a great secondary, or main, car if someone traveled a lot in town. Chládek is even looking into working with companies for commercial deployment down the road.
At the moment, the vehicle is undergoing testing on public roads in Prague. We do not know the timeline for when it will reach the masses or what the consumer price will be, yet.
Check out the video of it down below!