With Geneva Motor Show rapidly approaching, we always look forward to seeing some crazy new concept cars uncovered, and one company which never fails to disappoint is Swiss firm Rinspeed. They’ll be introducing us to BamBoo, hailed as a ‘taste of this summer’.
BamBoo is a playful homage to the Seventies, the South of France and St Tropez. Think Brigitte Bardot behind the wheel alongside playboy Gunther Sachs heading to Tahiti beach in the sunshine (their words, not ours!). The colour palette reflecting this disposition, apparantly ranging from salmon to lobster and yellow.
American pop artist James Rizzi was approached to add his artistic touches to the concept car, designing the giant beach scene on the outside of the roof. His drawings and woven Rizzi bird also cover the seating surfaces in the interior.
This lifestyle car is designed to be a fun rental car and leisure buggy of sorts, perfect for short distance travel between the beach, hotel and restaurants on pretty holiday spots around the planet.
In sharp contrast to the dreamy retro feel, BamBoo definitely points to the future in terms of technology. A communications display replaces the front grille (mostly unnecessary on an electric vehicle anyway) and the inflatable roof doubles up as a beach blanket. Handy!
The high-res LCD-LED ‘Identiface’ display enables drivers to give their vehicles a unique personality.
Messages from social networks can be shown to passersby, warnings displayed to other drivers, along with news from around the world, the manufacturer’s logo, or even an offer for a ride from A to B, helping reduce ones CO2 footprint.
You can change the colour of the Rizzi bird on front of the display, indicating that you’re single (green), ready to party (blue) or that you need a break (orange).
The interior is simple but highly refined. The bench in ‘Bordeaux red’, the upholstery woven with genuine bamboo thread, the breadbox shaped dashboard opening to reveal the control elements and a futuristic VDO display.
Both rear seats are inflatable and can be completely removed and even taken to the beach! The far right of the glove box houses a 7-inch HTC tablet PC ‘flyer’ with docking station, helping you stay connected with Facebook and Twitter, Internet radio and enhanced location-based content.
It even has a fold-down electric scooter on board. And, in typical Swiss fashion, the car is started with a Swiss army knife!
Its electric motor gives 54kw of power. The high-tourque motor ‘Made in Germany’ can accelerate the 1,090kg vehicle to a top speed of 120km/h.
The battery’s capacity is enough to last you 105km.
Though the initial inspiration behind this vehicle seems so wonderfully whimsical, we feel the body of the vehicle doesn’t quite do the concept justice. It really has just turned out like an ugly peach, or sorry-looking salmon plastic golf buggy.
Having said this we do admire the creativity and imagination which has gone into this creation – the social network integration in particular, which will clearly be a reality in the near future. However, we doubt you’ll be showing off your status updates on the outside of your car, a little distracting no?