As automotive technology progresses, so does the pace with which vehicles will need to be replaced. But not the entire vehicle at once, says Rinspeed. Some components will wear out or become obsolete faster than others.
Rinspeed's solution is the Snap concept pictured here. Unveiled at CES, the Rinspeed Snap envisions a passenger cell that can attach or detach to a skateboard-like powertrain base. So much for planned obsolescence.
That base incorporates a modest 51 kilowatts' (68 horsepower's) worth of electric powertrain, yet claims a 0-62 time of five seconds flat – or at least it would if it could reach that speed. Designed for urban environments (not the highway), Rinspeed estimates the vehicle would top out at around 50 mph, and travel for about 62 miles on a single charge. Performance specs aside, each of those four 18-inch wheels can turn to help with inner-city maneuverability, and of course the entire thing drives itself around.
Onto that base, the ever-innovative Frank M. Rinderknecht has installed a mobile living room with space for four – and three displays for each, swinging into place on individual arms. The windows are designed to display information to those within and without. It also packs unique features like bacteria-eliminating ultraviolet lighting, a full range of wireless connectivity and charging capabilities, and even an on-board farming compartments for mint and strawberry shakes on the go.
Detaching the two parts of the vehicle, says Rinspeed, would not only allow for easier upgrades of the components, but greater flexibility as well. As with most of Rinderknecht's zany designs, we don't expect to see this one leave the floors of the convention centers in Las Vegas and Geneva. But it's always interesting to see what the team at Rinspeed and their many corporate partners come up with, and in that regard, the Snap concept is no exception.