Tuesday, April 7, 2009

GM + Segway + pedicab chassis = Chapter 11

Our taxpayer bailout money went to THIS?

GM adds Segway engine, bug splatter shield & training wheels to pedicab chassis, holds irony-free press conference/unveiling in NYC this morning.

The P.U.M.A. (which stands for Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility Project) can attain a top speed of 35 mph, runs on a lithium battery and has a vehicle to vehicle technology that keeps it from colliding with anything in its way (including pedestrians). GM will be designing snazzy interchangeable plastic snap-on customizable color pieces so you'll look different from everyone else driving these nerdmobiles.

NYC has already banned the Segway from bicycle lanes and sidewalks. Putting a chair & a windshield on one isn't going to help. And although the PUMA has a nifty gadget to avoid collisions - the V2V technology that stops it before it hits anything/anyone - regrettably, NY cabdrivers don't have V2V yet, and will barely look up from lighting their incense or mumbling incoherent Farsi into their Bluetooths if they see one of these iPods on wheels humming past.

A word to GM: Just file bankruptcy already, because if this product is any indication of your business acumen, you'd do better with crayon-wielding pre-schoolers in your design unit.

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