GM and Segway are teaming together to build a new two-wheeled vehicle made for zipping around city streets. The GM-Segway PUMA — short for Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility — combines the small size of Segway’s Personal Transporters with the real-world application of GM’s motor vehicles.
GM-Segway PUMA: Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility
The GM-Segway PUMA, being demoed at a New York auto show this week, runs on batteries and can go as fast as 35 miles per hour. Unlike previous Segway models, the PUMA has an overhead enclosure. It also boasts what’s described as “vehicle-to-vehicle technology” that’s said to help drivers avoid traffic and get around the city more effectively.
“Imagine small, nimble electric vehicles that know where other moving objects are and avoid running into them,” says GM VP of Research and Development Larry Burns. “Now, connect those vehicles in an Internet-like web and you can greatly enhance the ability of people to move through cities, find places to park and connect to their social and business networks.”
Yes, you read correctly: an “Internet-like web.” While it’s not fully clear what that entails, GM and Segway say the PUMA incorporates “design creativity, fashion, fun and social networking.”
Other features being touted in the PUMA include all-electronic acceleration, dynamic stabilization, and “autonomous driving and parking.”
PUMA Vehicle Specifics
Up to two people can ride in a PUMA at any time. It runs for about 35 miles on each battery charge. GM and Segway haven’t released a specific cost as of yet, though representatives indicate the PUMA will retail for about “one-fourth to one-third the cost” of a typical full-sized car.
The GM-Segway PUMA is scheduled to go into full production by 2012.
GM-Segway PUMA Video
Check out the following GM-Segway PUMA video to see the Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility in action.