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Community Designed Commuter Vehicle

Old 02-13-20, 11:17 AM
  #1  
Centurial
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Community Designed Commuter Vehicle

This is Matt and Iíve got a great new project for you. We want to build a commuter vehicle and we need your help.

This vehicle will be affordable and eco friendly. The features and aesthetics will be chosen entirely by popular vote. The more people who engage in voting the better. So please share the facebook poles, and get your friends and family involved.

All results will be posted on our web page. including an interactive 3D model. As the building begins we will log the build on our YouTube channel for everyone to follow along with. When done the vehicle will be tested and revised by vote. This repeats till the vehicles last vote.

Last vote, The vehicle is good. Yes or no. If youíre in, show us some love! First vote starts tomorrow 2/14/2020. Each vote lasts 2-3 days. Should be enough time to allow everyone to talk and vote.

You can find us on YouTube, search Centurialinc, or find us on FaceBook, search Centurial. See the website for more details. Centurialinc.com
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Old 02-13-20, 02:52 PM
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I would go with 4 wheels, not 3 wheels. At some time someone will have an accident. A vehicle with 4 wheels is less likely to roll over. Some injuries occur due to roll over.

On your video you mentioned solar panels on a trailer. Don't put them on a trailer. Put them on the main vehicle.

You could make a single seat model, and a twin seat model, and even a model with more seats. They could be used as environmentally friendly taxis.

Make heating and air conditioning optional. Ventilation is important.
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Old 02-13-20, 03:19 PM
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Good suggestions.

We like four wheels as well. But that comes with a substantial increase in regulations. But if that's the popular vote then that's what I'll make and we will have to work through it.

Yes the panels could easily go on the vehicle. The trailer idea just allows for a lot more of them and folding them in makes it safer for transport and storage. But we will discuss the details later in the vote topics.

I agree vents are a must. But heat and air con. I'm not sure where most people stand on the matter. It will be interesting.

Thank you for your thoughts. I hope to hear more from you as the project progresses. Very good thoughts.

Best Matt
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Old 02-14-20, 08:16 AM
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I personally think that the most versatile commuter vehicle is a bicycle, whether self-powered or assisted. Since your plan is to build a commuter "car", I'd advise to 1) rethink the recumbent design. Most folks will want (require) easy in and out. Also, the low profile affects visibility to other larger vehicles. 2) The design on your web site has very little storage space. Where would I put my work stuff, laundry, groceries that I pickup on the way home? 3) Your site claims "no insurance required" however this may not be accurate in my state depending on your drive train configuration.

I sense that your goal is to produce something exciting, though probably not for the masses. IAW you don't really intend to attract people away from their cars. That's completely OK; though you would be limiting your market. I'll check out your site later when you open up voting and probably follow your project. I'm skeptical about your under $2K goal, but we'll see. Good luck.
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Old 02-14-20, 10:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Moe Zhoost View Post
I personally think that the most versatile commuter vehicle is a bicycle, whether self-powered or assisted. Since your plan is to build a commuter "car", I'd advise to 1) rethink the recumbent design. Most folks will want (require) easy in and out. Also, the low profile affects visibility to other larger vehicles. 2) The design on your web site has very little storage space. Where would I put my work stuff, laundry, groceries that I pickup on the way home? 3) Your site claims "no insurance required" however this may not be accurate in my state depending on your drive train configuration.

I sense that your goal is to produce something exciting, though probably not for the masses. IAW you don't really intend to attract people away from their cars. That's completely OK; though you would be limiting your market. I'll check out your site later when you open up voting and probably follow your project. I'm skeptical about your under $2K goal, but we'll see. Good luck.
Good suggestions. This project is open source. So at best I would sell kits. You nailed it. This is for fun and excitement. More entertaining than mass appeal. Keep it small and with a good group a friends to work on it with. That's it. The goals I set are likely to change. Yes no insurance in the state of AZ. As long as the engine is 49cc or less and if electric, no more than 750 watts. So for me that's no problem. Everyone else will need to figure out the laws for their state. I don't have the resources to figure out every state. $2k is a tough goal. But that's how we operate. We aim for the stars. If we miss maybe we will hit the moon. In the end this is all for fun. If it leads to more cool if not I don't mind. Thanks for the support. I'll post the first vote latter today.
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Old 02-14-20, 01:39 PM
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Old 02-14-20, 03:25 PM
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Maybe you could start out by spelling correctly.


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Old 02-14-20, 04:00 PM
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Good catch. Fixed, thank you.

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Old 02-14-20, 04:09 PM
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First Vote.

Let's get the big one out of the way. This will affect the design, and cost, the most. So this is where we will start.

Power Plant.

Gas, Electric, Pedal, Pedal Assist.


Make your case to the group. You can reply here if you like with your vote. Make only 1 choice. But the web page for the project has the vote on it and is automatic. It would help a lot If you voted there and talked about it here. Go to centurialinc.com and under vehicles, commuter, vote is at the bottom of that page.

I'm going with gas, it's easy, I know it well and the cost to go electric is 2 times more expensive at least. Fast refueling longer range. No pedals. Any thoughts?

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Old 02-15-20, 10:36 AM
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I voted Pedal Assist (which I assume is electric). Gas is ok but around here it would limit the vehicle to roads only. Local greenways do not permit gas powered bikes as they are considered Mopeds under State Law. This designation also means motorcycle type helmet, registration, and insurance. An engine 50cc or above would make it a full-fledged motor vehicle. Engines are noisy and smelly too. I'm not sure I would want to be enclosed in the same small place as one.

Also, full electric without pedal assist may meet the NC definition of a Moped, though I'm not sure. Even if not, many greenways/trails around the country prohibit e-bikes with throttles.

No issue if one will only ride on streets. Although I do see a lot of recumbent trikes (some with E-motors) on greenways, I have not yet seen one shelled out like a velomobile.
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Old 02-19-20, 08:12 PM
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Vote Closed, Results plus new concept

Voting finished. Not many votes. 7 total. But, I got a lot of feed back from everyone. Some of it was the dumbest and meanest s**t you can think of. But some of you know what your talking about and made some very good suggestions that I took. You know who you are and I thank you for your positive input. I also want to thank the haters. You motivate me to prove you wrong. You know who you are and I thank you for that.

Soooooo. I took that feed back and revised the concept.

In first place. Gas with 4 total votes LOL.
In second place. Peddle/assist 2 votes
In third place. electric 1 vote

Most did not want three wheels. Makes sens you all ride..... So a motorcycle it is. GAS! highway legal? I will do my best but that is a hard goal to reach. Surface streets for sure.

I'm not allowed to upload images yet. So, new concept is on the website. The large wheels are out riggers that catch the bike and prevent tipping over. They will be retractable. Hate it? Love it? you decide...... Next vote starts soon. I will let you know when it opens.
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Old 02-19-20, 08:50 PM
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What does a gasoline-powered motorcycle have to do with bike commuting, or bicycling in general?
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Old 02-19-20, 09:07 PM
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Originally Posted by JanMM View Post
What does a gasoline-powered motorcycle have to do with bike commuting, or bicycling in general?
Commuting on two wheels at this point. The first vote was power plant. And I wanted the opinion of the cycling community. Unfortunately the peddle power crowd was out voted by the motorcycle crowd.

So if no one is interested anymore I understand. Then this thread will just go quite. But if this group is still interested then the thread will continue.

Best Matt
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Old 02-19-20, 10:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Centurial View Post
In first place. Gas with 4 total votes LOL.
In second place. Peddle/assist 2 votes
In third place. electric 1 vote

Most did not want three wheels. Makes sens you all ride..... So a motorcycle it is. GAS! highway legal? I will do my best but that is a hard goal to reach. Surface streets for sure.
It is much more difficult to make a gas powered vehicle legal on the roads.

If you made it pedal assist/electric, it would be much easier.
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Old 02-20-20, 12:43 AM
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Power plant: legs
Wheels: 2
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Old 02-25-20, 09:31 AM
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Have you seem the Quatrovelo? If someone could make one at half the cost (good luck), it would be huge. Still pricey, but especially with modern e-assist, and outright substitute for at least one car in a typical family.

Velomobiel.nl - QuattroVelo: intro
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Old 02-25-20, 12:13 PM
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Yup that's what we are trying to do. Now that is a peddle vehicle and we just finished the first vote. Which concluded that it will be gas powered and preferably highway capable. Which means we won't be building a Velomobile.

But we are confident we can hit the 4K$ price target and provide a one person fully enclosed commuter. Most Velomobiles are built with high performance parts and materials. Ours will not. Minimalist, steel and plastic with mostly Chinese parts. It will likely be a motorcycle. But that should be fine with outriggers. A new concept is now up on our website. It's a live interactive 3D model. Please check it out and let me know what you think. See Centurialinc.com

Next Votes starts this Friday.
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Old 02-25-20, 12:29 PM
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Motorcycles don't belong in here. GTFO with that crap.
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Old 02-25-20, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
Motorcycles don't belong in here. GTFO with that crap.
Peddle power was an option.... but this group wasn't active with votes, soooooo. The motorcycle crowd wins!

So long then. And it's not good practice to complain about the results of things you did not help with, even though you had plenty of opportunity to help, and the project was intended for YOU to get what YOU like, all you had to do...... was click a button..... Very childish. The recumbent guys are more involved and open minded and willing to help......

If anyone is still interested in the project, follow us on FaceBook or YouTube. We will have plenty more votes for THOSE who care to help.

All links can be found at Centurialinc.com,

Best Matt

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Old 02-25-20, 12:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Centurial View Post
Peddle power was an option.... but this group wasn't active with votes, soooooo. The motorcycle crowd wins!

So long then. And it's not good practice to complain about the results of things you did not help with, even though you had plenty of opportunity to help, and the project was intended for YOU to get what YOU like, all you had to do...... was click a button..... Very childish.

If anyone is still interested in the project, follow us on FaceBook or YouTube. We will have plenty more votes for THOSE who care to help.

All links can be found at Centurialinc.com,

Best Matt
It would be disingenuous for me to vote on something I'm not invested in. This isn't the first time someone has dropped in here and asked the group to do their homework for them.

Cheers.
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Old 02-25-20, 01:34 PM
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I'm not sure 7 people is representative of the goals of the world, although perhaps representative of where your concept was posted, and who read it.

If it is a local commuter, I'd still consider electric, although that could very well double the price when adding in the cost of the batteries.

Your car looks a lot like the Aptera... which got quite far, but never quite made it to final production.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aptera_2_Series
Ohh... it looks like they are back.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aptera_3
Not a company I would send money to until they actually have cars on hand.

It looks like there is another company in that genre
https://www.eliomotors.com/

Is that where you are getting the 80+ MPG from?

If you make your car very low to the ground with low mounted weight, then you will get some intrinsic stability. That may well be a benefit of going with a Battery powered car. I think tilting on turns can be achieved a bit with steering geometry, and should help considerably.

Your images on the web page show a sleek vehicle, but tall and narrow. And, I think stability would be compromised.

Nonetheless, the Aptera and Elio use outriggers. A good idea for stability, but I have to wonder if they would be prone to problems with impacts.

For me, I would require at least a 100 mile range, and 55 MPH for a vehicle. I can barely go anywhere for < 40 miles, and a bit of a buffer will help if I choose to do a side-trip, or with battery longevity.

2, 3, or 4 wheels? You'd have to decide how to do starts/stops if you built a fully enclosed 2 wheel vehicle.
4 wheels oriented on the 4 corners of a rectangle may well be the most stable design.

Ultimately the choice of 3 or 4 wheels may be a licensing issue. 3 wheels gets licensed as motorcycle. 4 wheels gets licensed as a car (or NEV with restrictions of use). And that will heavily impact your build and safety designs. Unfortunately building a 3 wheeled "motorcycle" brings about other laws such as motorcycle endorsement on the driver's license, and potentially wearing a helmet.
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Old 02-25-20, 01:43 PM
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Old 02-25-20, 01:55 PM
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As far as materials, chromoly may be able to be designed to half the thickness/weight of mild steel, and may well be similar to at least some aluminum components, 6061? 7xxx?

If you wish to be minimalistic, and efficiency oriented, then anything you can do to keep the weight down will help. Your design of say a 500 pound car will be very different than a 1500 pound car. And, the heavier you make one component, that will trickle down through the rest of the vehicle. Stronger frame, stronger motor, stronger wheels, etc.. and more weight.

I applaud your idea of building the car with hardware store components, bolt on and pop rivets, but I'm not convinced that will achieve the sleek car in the photos above.

Kit Car?
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Old 02-25-20, 03:23 PM
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It better have good air conditioning. And one of those bike flags.
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Old 02-25-20, 03:30 PM
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That's a better rendering than the other one I found, which resembled a half dome tent. But that one seemed a lot more realistic for someone to build themselves for $2000... if they already have their own welder. Selling it for $2000, did not seem likely.

This may be of interest Craig Vetter, designer and inventor of the Windjammer fairing,Triumph Hurricane Motorcycle Streamliners and fuel economy motorcycles
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