WASHINGTON – Few things are more frustrating than circling the block looking for parking, and then realizing your car is too big for an open spot.
A new electric car that folds itself in half might be the solution.
Developed by South Korean researchers, “Armadillo-T” imitates the behavior of the South American animal, which rolls itself up into a ball when being threatened by predators.
The four-wheel-drive two-seater, with four in-wheel motors tucks its rear body into the front of the car, shrinking its 9-foot-2-inch frame almost in half, into a 5-foot-4-inch length vehicle.
With a smartphone-interfaced remote control, the folded-up car can turn 360 degrees, squeezing into tough-to-navigate spots.
The prototype Armadillo-T isn’t suitable for highway driving, with a top speed of 37 mph. Its makers say with it 10-minute charge, the car can cover 62 miles.
Professor In-Soo Suh, with the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, or KAIST, says the vehicle would qualify as a personal mobility vehicle, or PMV.
Watch the Armadillo-T fold itself up to fit in a parking spot: