Order yours now. The freaky deaky folding car. (Video)

posted at 6:31 pm on October 27, 2013 by Jazz Shaw

Yes, before you say anything, it hasn’t exactly been a rocking news weekend. But some of you must be looking for ways to save space after Obamacare forces you to move into one of those micro-apartments which are all the rage these days. And if you’re going to have to figure out how to pack all of your inside stuff into 800 square feet, you’ll clearly need to do something about how much space you’re taking up in the parking area. Have no fear.

Those clever folks in South Korea have just the answer. It’s a car called the Armadillo… most likely because it’s hardly bigger than one. But just being small while it’s driving around town isn’t good enough. This is the car that folds in half after you park it. And for the cherry on the sundae, you can operate it from your SmartPhone. Let’s just go to the video.

“We see cars as a complicated machine. But it is now time to start thinking new. Cars will be handy and convenient in the future. In other words, it will be more of a consumer electronic product,” said Suh In-Soo, a professor at the Graduate School for Green Transportation at KAIST who led the project.

The Armadillo-T, named after its design for its rear looks like a South American armadillo shell, shrinks from 110 inches to 70 inches. The rear shell kicks upward covering over the front, taking up only one-third of a typical Korean parking space. The micro car has a maximum speed of 37 mph and can travel 62 miles off a 10-minute fast charge.

“At first, I thought it was a toy. But the best part about it is that it’s environmentally efficient and could save a lot of space,” said Lee Chanhee, a student at a recent Korea Automotive Industry Exhibition of the Armadillo-T near Seoul.

Out of curiosity, why is it that the trend towards really extreme, small cars has never caught on in the United States? Not just out in the country… I mean in the big cities. There have been really small cars available for some time now, particularly some Brit models, Smartcars and the like. And even up here I’ve seen them around town once in a great while. But they just don’t seem to show up in any numbers. I’m sure they’re horrible for cold weather, snow, ice and such, but in warmer cities down South, have they ever taken off?

I haven’t seen them. Maybe it’s just our traditional attraction to metal and muscle.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Yeah, no thanks…

OmahaConservative on October 27, 2013 at 6:34 PM

It looks like a later day Trabant. And is probably as safe and reliable as one.

simkeith on October 27, 2013 at 6:35 PM

So, you drive it fully erect, then it goes limp?

faraway on October 27, 2013 at 6:37 PM

The official car of the GOP establishment.

Weight of Glory on October 27, 2013 at 6:39 PM

Uh, okay it “folds” – and what’s the point?

The gayest, silliest electric toy car ever.

Pork-Chop on October 27, 2013 at 6:40 PM

I don’t get the point to the folding up business. It still needs its full length to unfold, so a parking space would need to be big enough for it to unfold.

Warner Todd Huston on October 27, 2013 at 6:40 PM

It’s a car called the Armadillo… most likely because it’s hardly bigger than one.

If you drive through any country roads, you’ll see that there’s another possible reason…

Weight of Glory on October 27, 2013 at 6:41 PM

If you drive through any country roads, you’ll see that there’s another possible reason…

Weight of Glory on October 27, 2013 at 6:41 PM

Roadkill isn’t as catchy of a name though.

Flange on October 27, 2013 at 6:44 PM

Actually, the translation is screwed up.

Armadillidiidae means roly-poly

faraway on October 27, 2013 at 6:46 PM

Umm here in Texas we really aren’t into tiny anything especially cars. Mostly trucks are the vehicle du jour for Texans. We let the limp wristed north easterners have the tiny cars.

neyney on October 27, 2013 at 6:46 PM

I’m torn on this. I would like to drive a small car, but I’m in an environment with mostly big cars & trucks, so small cars seem unsafe.

22044 on October 27, 2013 at 6:50 PM

Roadkill isn’t as catchy of a name though.

Flange on October 27, 2013 at 6:44 PM

indeed

Weight of Glory on October 27, 2013 at 6:53 PM

But the illegals aliens in the trunk of this folding taco shell car would be crushed and turned into guacamole.

SparkPlug on October 27, 2013 at 6:53 PM

I might be interested if it was a Transformer that did double duty as a vacuum cleaner.

jix on October 27, 2013 at 6:57 PM

I haven’t seen them. Maybe it’s just our traditional attraction to metal and muscle.

Maybe it’s our need to use them for something other than threading what amounts to a sidewalk in order to buy one shirt from a 10 x 10 “store.”

I couldn’t even buy groceries in that thing.

Also, is this why there’s still no mass produced jet packs? D!cking around with stuff like this? Pass out Proz@c to free them from fixating on making things itty-bitty and get on with the personal strap-rockets.

Axe on October 27, 2013 at 6:58 PM

Out of curiosity, why is it that the trend towards really extreme, small cars has never caught on in the United States?

My sports car rolls in at a heft $3600 lbs. My Jeep likely had an additional 600 to 800 lbs of impact resisting material. The SUV I am looking at buying next is the largest one in North America. If I were rich enough I would be having armor plating and bullet resistant glass installed as well.
Why I see some people out on the road in toys baffles my mind. It is as if they imagine themselves more invulnerable than I think of myself. They absolutely must be single, because I cannot for the life of me imagine letting one of my family members ride in a car like the ones I see.

astonerii on October 27, 2013 at 7:00 PM

You lost me at “South Korea.”

mintycrys on October 27, 2013 at 7:00 PM

“Honest, Officer, I was just driving down the street and all of a sudden the car began to fold up onto itself after my phone rang… I can’t explain it!”

ExpressoBold on October 27, 2013 at 7:05 PM

I’m sure they’re horrible for cold weather, snow, ice and such, but in warmer cities down South, have they ever taken off?

Down here in Texas, you’ll see a small one every now and then, mostly in the cities, and a few more per capita probably in Austin. And, almost to a car, they’ll have the obligatory Obama 2008 or 2012 sticker or some other such crap, like “World Peace”, a peace sign, or some sort of enviro-whacko message.

Me, if I’m reasonably sure no cops are around, I’ll just whip my Ford King Ranch truck around them and try to “guide” them toward the sidewalks on which they belong. ;-)

TXUS on October 27, 2013 at 7:05 PM

TXUS on October 27, 2013 at 7:05 PM

I only do that when they are belligerents in the high speed passing lane for extended periods of time.

astonerii on October 27, 2013 at 7:12 PM

I lives about 100 miles south of Armadillo.
The place is kind of boring actually.

annoyinglittletwerp on October 27, 2013 at 7:19 PM

I’m sure they’re horrible for cold weather, snow, ice and such, but in warmer cities down South, have they ever taken off?

Take 95 from Boca to Miami in one of them.

katy the mean old lady on October 27, 2013 at 7:19 PM

I can see a use for this in a mad-cap comedy. That’s about it.

Mojave Mark on October 27, 2013 at 7:28 PM

I thought the Fiat beer-can 600 already had that distinction when hit by anything heavier than a bicycle.

viking01 on October 27, 2013 at 7:33 PM

I might be interested if it was a Transformer that did double duty as a vacuum cleaner.

jix on October 27, 2013 at 6:57 PM

Hahaha! Thread winner!!

PatriotGal2257 on October 27, 2013 at 7:34 PM

O/T:

60 Minutes just aired a completely devastating report on Benghazi. The Obama Admin will probably roll their eye when they’re asked about it tomorrow, but make sure you watch it. It’s absolutely damning.

joekenha on October 27, 2013 at 7:34 PM

Maryland – Not an abundance of non-urban roads for this thing.

SB 344 – Motor Vehicles – Limited Speed Vehicles – Requirements and Prohibitions

This law limits vehicles with the maximum speed capability of between 25 and 55 mph to be driven on highways where the speed limit is at least five miles per hour less than the vehicle’s maximum speed. An auto dealer must inform the buyer of the limitations and the vehicle must be sold with an emblem designating it as a “limited speed vehicle.”

News2Use on October 27, 2013 at 7:34 PM

No room for solar panels…

Not worthy….

Electrongod on October 27, 2013 at 7:36 PM

Next time I’m in the market for skates I might consider buying a couple of them.

TXUS on October 27, 2013 at 7:38 PM

Does it come in a convertible?

Kafir on October 27, 2013 at 7:41 PM

O/T:

60 Minutes just aired a completely devastating report on Benghazi. The Obama Admin will probably roll their eye when they’re asked about it tomorrow, but make sure you watch it. It’s absolutely damning.

joekenha on October 27, 2013 at 7:34 PM

Whoa, I completely forgot about that. Should have watched that instead of the garbage time at the end of the Redskins-Broncos game.

Hopefully some folks on tonight’s QOTD watched it as well.

22044 on October 27, 2013 at 7:46 PM

O/T:

60 Minutes just aired a completely devastating report on Benghazi. The Obama Admin will probably roll their eye when they’re asked about it tomorrow, but make sure you watch it. It’s absolutely damning.

joekenha on October 27, 2013 at 7:34 PM

Whoa! And I’m listening to Pat Caddel totally trash the WH.
Need to check and see if there is pork in the palm trees.

katy the mean old lady on October 27, 2013 at 7:47 PM

Electrongod on October 27, 2013 at 7:36 PM

Good to see your sense of humor again. Hope things are getting better.

Barred on October 27, 2013 at 7:47 PM

If it won’t fit in my pocket I don’ want it.

bgibbs1000 on October 27, 2013 at 7:48 PM

don’t

bgibbs1000 on October 27, 2013 at 7:48 PM

60 Minutes: Benghazi

Video of tonight’s program at the link.

INC on October 27, 2013 at 7:53 PM

I don’t think these things are safe either. I live in Alabama and we hardly ever see any tiny cars here.

sherrimae on October 27, 2013 at 7:56 PM

CBS Benghazi

it’s now well established that the Americans were attacked by al Qaeda in a well-planned assault.

Wait until the public finds out that we were attacked by Al Qaeda again… on Sep 11th

faraway on October 27, 2013 at 8:00 PM

… and Obama knew in advance

faraway on October 27, 2013 at 8:01 PM

I don’t think these things are safe either. I live in Alabama and we hardly ever see any tiny cars here.

sherrimae on October 27, 2013 at 7:56 PM

But your potholes are filled with blue and silver aluminum..
:)

Electrongod on October 27, 2013 at 8:03 PM

CBS is not allowing comments

faraway on October 27, 2013 at 8:03 PM

The ultimate beta male car.

…Allahpundit normally post something like this but he had to catch a flight to South Korea.

batter on October 27, 2013 at 8:05 PM

Obama knew in advance about:

- An Al Qaeda attack on our embassy

- the healthcare website was not going to work

and he didn’t rescue either one

faraway on October 27, 2013 at 8:05 PM

I’ll bet it folds up really small when it gets hit by a big rig.

CurtZHP on October 27, 2013 at 8:07 PM

60 Minutes just aired a completely devastating report on Benghazi. The Obama Admin will probably roll their eye when they’re asked about it tomorrow, but make sure you watch it. It’s absolutely damning.

joekenha on October 27, 2013 at 7:34 PM

CBS seems to have developed journalism skills lately. Were they last in ratings among the MSM, taking up actual journalism in a desperate attempt to regain relevance?

Who is John Galt on October 27, 2013 at 8:08 PM

I can’t wait to run over one of these with my Freightliner.

*Ba-dump*

What was that?

Kraken on October 27, 2013 at 8:19 PM

60 Minutes: Benghazi

Video of tonight’s program at the link.

INC on October 27, 2013 at 7:53 PM

Wow! If this isn’t a smoking gun, guns don’t smoke. You’d think that at least CBS’ WH correspondent might have some interesting questions for the Carney the SpokesKid at tomorrow’s briefing.

That British spec op is a hero, God Bless him.

TXUS on October 27, 2013 at 8:19 PM

That thing looks like a whole lotta lawsuits just waiting to happen.

Out of curiosity, why is it that the trend towards really extreme, small cars has never caught on in the United States? Not just out in the country… I mean in the big cities.

Because Americans want to drive cars…not “electronic devices”. This folding car would still take up one space in a standard parking garage and still cost $300-$400 a month to park it. Now, if garages in large cities like NY can restripe portions into smaller spaces for these kind of folding mini-cars, and fit more of them in, the price would come down a bit.

JetBoy on October 27, 2013 at 8:19 PM

Roadkill isn’t as catchy of a name though.

Flange on October 27, 2013 at 6:44 PM

I think roadkill is still more catchy than the Toyota TRD. I can’t imagine anybody driving a TRD, unless it is made by Chrysler.

Old Country Boy on October 27, 2013 at 8:39 PM

I see a couple of them cruising around northern Connecticut. I think the utility there is when you have a short driveway leading directly onto a thoroughfare.

In the city, alternatives are already served by public transportation and, for the dorks, bicycles. People who need to have cars would still rather buy an ordinary sedan with it’s predictable ownership costs than gamble on something new-fangled and electric.

eh on October 27, 2013 at 8:44 PM

I don’t know why, but when I saw the title and then the video, I was disappointed that it didn’t fold down to briefcase size.

eh on October 27, 2013 at 8:46 PM

I don’t think these things are safe either. I live in Alabama and we hardly ever see any tiny cars here.

sherrimae on October 27, 2013 at 7:56 PM

*Insert indoor plumbing joke here*

eh on October 27, 2013 at 8:49 PM

Let see; would there be ANY winners in a head-on collision between this and a Smartcar? Probably not, since a motorcyclist can kill a Smartcar driver and survive.

michaelo on October 27, 2013 at 8:51 PM

In the even of a bad accident they don’t bother to cut you out of it. They just bury the whole thing.

HotAirian on October 27, 2013 at 8:53 PM

eh on October 27, 2013 at 8:49 PM

Thanks for the laugh. I have to pick up a load tonight at 0100 and run it to Chicago. I needed something to pick up my spirit.

No offense, sherrimae…

Kraken on October 27, 2013 at 8:56 PM

The micro car has a maximum speed of 37 mph and can travel 62 miles off a 10-minute fast charge.

At what? 62 miles at 10mph? It certainly won’t be at 37mph.

GarandFan on October 27, 2013 at 9:18 PM

I haven’t seen them. Maybe it’s just our traditional attraction to metal and muscle.

Or maybe it’s that parking isn’t that much of an issue in all but a handful of major cities. I see Fiats and Smartcars a lot in San Francisco, but rarely in the suburbs. No one wants to be crushed to death by an SUV on the freeway, but everyone wants to be able to find parking.

calbear on October 27, 2013 at 9:18 PM

There’s really limited utility in the vehicle’s ability to fold. If you fold this up on the street and then someone pulls in close behind you, you can’t unfold it – you’re screwed. There only practical use would be if you had limited space in your garage.

Roc on October 27, 2013 at 9:43 PM

Well, that’s completely pointless.

Midas on October 27, 2013 at 9:48 PM

I’m sure they’re horrible for cold weather, snow, ice and such, but in warmer cities down South, have they ever taken off?

Jazz, in Memphis those toys would get run over by idiots driving F-250′s, SUV’s and 40 year old Cadillac cars. Atlanta is even worse, as is Miami. 37 MPH is parking lot speed down here.

simkeith on October 27, 2013 at 10:07 PM

Armadillos carry leprosy.

nuff said

workingclass artist on October 27, 2013 at 10:09 PM

I just don’t see the upside. Yes, the vehicle can shrink it’s footprint while parked, but what if someone parks directly behind it while folded? How can you get the car out of the parking space without being able to lower the rear-end? Total gimmick, IMHO.

Mike Mogilski

mogilla on October 27, 2013 at 10:19 PM

62 miles on a 10 minute charge? Really? Well I guess they solved the electric car battery weak point.

SunSword on October 27, 2013 at 10:23 PM

So, you drive it fully erect, then it goes limp?

faraway on October 27, 2013 at 6:37 PM

Well if you keep it erect for more than 4 hours you have to take it in to a mechanic.

Oldnuke on October 27, 2013 at 10:24 PM

Does it come in a convertible?

Kafir on October 27, 2013 at 7:41 PM

Of course, you just peel it open with a P-38. Like a can of C-rats.

Oldnuke on October 27, 2013 at 10:28 PM

Why don’t we see more of these?

Very simple answer. People very rarely live anywhere that a week’s groceries can be carried home by hand, within walking distance. We actually use our vehicles to haul stuff.

Watch the Amish for a few minutes. They’re not riding Shetland ponies down to the sawmill, they have a big freeking horse, and a big freeking cart behind it.

Unless the only reason to leave your home is to commute, end of story, these gimmicky little Radio Shack toys are useless.

PXCharon on October 27, 2013 at 11:30 PM

Well, 37 mph means it can’t legally go on the freeways. That makes it not possible to drive it the ten miles to the light rail. Oh, wait, we could drive seven miles to the bus, and take that to the light rail, and then take that downtown (which is only sixteen miles.)

I think it will struggle in the plowed snow and not go in unplowed snow. It will bottom out on my driveway. Even so, if it was $us5000, it would be tempting for running to the grocery store, the YMCA, … but I have a nagging suspicion that the seating height is less than forty inches, so I’d be banging my head.

htom on October 28, 2013 at 12:39 AM

Out of curiosity, why is it that the trend towards really extreme, small cars has never caught on in the United States?

Our birthrates haven’t plummeted as far yet, and women don’t wait as long to have kids as they do in Europe.

Also 9$ gallon gas, and less crowded metro areas.

WryTrvllr on October 28, 2013 at 3:19 AM

So, you drive it fully erect, then it goes limp?
faraway on October 27, 2013 at 6:37 PM

No.. actually the car is gay….it assumes the “catch” position at the mere flip of a switch.. whenever the master is ready :D

BigSven on October 28, 2013 at 7:44 AM

Maybe in one of those florida retirement communites.
but then they already run around in golf carts which have more room
to put stuff than this vehicle.

i did like the above commment of what happens if you have it folded and someone parks right next to you anyway.

and a top speed of 37 mph, thats the one item that will kill its sales.

sniffles1999 on October 28, 2013 at 7:49 AM

People very rarely live anywhere that a week’s groceries can be carried home by hand, within walking distance. We actually use our vehicles to haul stuff.

PXCharon on October 27, 2013 at 11:30 PM

On the upside, this car could be taken directly into the supermarket and used as a cart…when you come out of the store, your bags are already inside, and you simply hop behind the wheel and go.

JetBoy on October 28, 2013 at 8:51 AM

Progressives love this thing, I’m sure.

Not for themselves. They see it as something for a guy built like Michael Moore, wearing an NRA ballcap and a T-shirt with the slogan

EAT EVERYTHING

DIE HAPPY

on the front.

He, they think, will look at it, and with a wide freaky grin go “FATTY CARR!! WHOAAA!!”- and happily get in it and motor off to get squashed by a semi.

The progressives will then preen, sniff, and say, “Well, at least he isn’t harming Holy Mother Gaia any more.”

The Church Lady tendencies of progressives seem amusing until you consider that they hate everyone else so much that they would willingly exterminate them en masse to have “Gaia” to themselves if they thought they could get away with it.

Seen in that light, this thing isn’t so amusing.

clear ether

eon

eon on October 28, 2013 at 8:54 AM

Out of curiosity, why is it that the trend towards really extreme, small cars has never caught on in the United States?

Cost too much and are considered unsafe.

Dr. Frank Enstine on October 28, 2013 at 9:11 AM

File this under: Stuff rich bored smart people made that consumers wouldn’t buy.

I believe it would fall after Google Glass.

RDE2010 on October 28, 2013 at 9:14 AM

If they put a golf bag rack on the back. Who knows? I’ve said the same thing about those “smart cars”…I’d have a golf cart that could go 60 mph – I’d never have a bad lie. **GRIN**

golfer1 on October 28, 2013 at 9:15 AM

I can hardly wait for the ultimate showdown…this and the Prius owner, who is more environmentally tuned in?

right2bright on October 28, 2013 at 9:22 AM

why is it that the trend towards really extreme, small cars has never caught on in the United States? Not just out in the country… I mean in the big cities.

Because the people apt to purchase these souped up golf carts are into alternative forms of transportation. Which is a shame because these death traps would ensure a few less tree huggers in the long-run.

Happy Nomad on October 28, 2013 at 9:26 AM

C’mon guys, this is an incremental step towards the car from the old cartoon – you know, the one that folds up into a briefcase so you don’t have to park at all! Getting closer to the “future” as envisioned in some of those cartoons is a great thing! (I want the house that goes up on stilts when the water comes in from a hurricane or whatnot.)

GWB on October 28, 2013 at 9:30 AM

At what? 62 miles at 10mph? It certainly won’t be at 37mph.

GarandFan on October 27, 2013 at 9:18 PM

62 miles on a 10 minute charge? Really? Well I guess they solved the electric car battery weak point.

SunSword on October 27, 2013 at 10:23 PM

It’s possible that they’re using these new graphene supercapacitors.

Also, I think that 62x37mph spec is way below the bar conventional electric cars are shooting for.

eh on October 28, 2013 at 9:54 AM

here’s a video: http://vimeo.com/51873011

eh on October 28, 2013 at 9:58 AM

So what happens when you park it and someone parks directly behind you so you can’t unfold it?

CrustyB on October 28, 2013 at 10:22 AM

CrustyB on October 28, 2013 at 10:22 AM

Assuming that he doesn’t park on top of it and squash it like a pop can, which anything bigger than a compact could easily do.

Your biggest problem would be theft. Four or five husky teenagers could pick it up, shove it in the back of a minivan or pickup, and be gone in less time than it takes to type this. While of no particular value as a car, its electric-powered guts, stripped, would be worth enough to make the (minimal) effort pay.

clear ether

eon

eon on October 28, 2013 at 10:47 AM

I had a folding car back in the 80′s. It was called a 1984 Plymouth Reliant.

portlandon on October 28, 2013 at 11:19 AM

It’s a golf cart.

redguy on October 28, 2013 at 11:20 AM

“Freaky Deaky is Allapundit’s line Jazz, stay in your own lane, stop being a wannabe, and create your own buzzwords, don’t rip them off from others.

RMCS_USN on October 28, 2013 at 3:34 PM

This actually may sell in Europe. The core of the older cities have streets about two feet wide and no parking spaces. When I visited Geneva, Switzerland a few years ago, it was amazing how people tried to jam even the small SmartCars into spaces hardly large enough for a bicycle.

bartbeast on October 28, 2013 at 4:27 PM