With 3D-Printing, manufacturers can create lighter, stronger components at a fraction of the time and cost of traditional production methods. The newest example of 3D-printing revolution is Blade – developed by Divergent Microfactories – the first supercar created with this technology.
Divergent Microfactories CEO Kevin Czinger introduced the company’s plan to dematerialise and democratise car manufacturing:
“At Divergent Microfactories, we’ve found a way to make automobiles that holds the promise of radically reducing the resource use and pollution generated by manufacturing. It also holds the promise of making large-scale car manufacturing affordable for small teams of innovators. And as Blade proves, we’ve done it without sacrificing style or substance. We’ve developed a sustainable path forward for the car industry that we believe will result in a renaissance in car manufacturing, with innovative, eco-friendly cars like Blade being designed and built in microfactories around the world.” – said Kevin Czinger, founder & CEO, Divergent Microfactories.
The Blade is based on a central, 3D printed joint called “Node”, into which carbon fibre rods are inserted to form a light and resilient chassis. Divergent claims that this method can reduce the weight of the chassis by as much as 90 per cent compared to conventional cars though the fact that it’s carbon fibre and not steel or aluminium probably has a lot to do with those weight savings.
The company plans to produce a limited number of cars to start but hopes to franchise its technology and let smaller boutique manufacturers build their own cars.
Equipped with a 700-horsepower bi-fuel engine that can use either compressed natural gas or gasoline, Blade goes from 0-60 in about two seconds and weighs around 1,400 pounds.
Divergent Microfactories plans to sell a limited number of high-performance vehicles that will be manufactured in its own microfactory.