Fomm Concept One

Somewhat reminiscent of the all-electric Rinspeed sQuba concept from the 2008 Geneva Motor Show, the new Fomm Concept One is an electric car with a bit of buoyancy. This Japanese car is being billed not only as the "world's smallest class four-seater electric vehicle," but also as an EV that floats and "even moves on water surface." In other words, this thing is kind of a boat.

And for good reason. The company behind the Concept One is targeting the EV at areas that are prone to flooding, an understandably noble goal for a country with the 2011 Tohoku tsunami still looming large in its rearview mirror. The company says:

Flood and water damage resistance capability helps prevent breakdowns even in the floods and downpours that often occur in Southeast Asia. ... Even if caught in a flood, a water-jet generator allows vehicle movement on the water surface.

Now, the Concept One is most decidedly not a full-mobility amphibious vehicle, and there will be maintenance work required after you go for a water outing. The car's floating ability is only an emergency function, Fomm advises, and the company acknowledges that "movement capability on water is limited," which sounds like corporate-speak for "you're along for the ride."

Either way, the Concept One weighs just 1,014 pounds and is 8.2-feet long by 4.24-ft. wide by 5.1-ft. tall. Two in-wheel electric motors up front offer a maximum output of 5kW each and a maximum torque of 280Nm each (207 pound-feet a piece), with driver control offered up by a motorcycle-style set of handlebars. The car also uses cassette-type batteries, but the chemistry is not specified.

Of course, the name and the rendered images in the gallery below give away the real-world status of the project. It's still mostly a pipe dream at this point. Fomm says that "all figures are target design values," but from the numbers involved, if you're at the wrong place at the wrong time time, having a vehicle around that can hit these targets could be incredibly helpful.

There's a brief video of the rendered vehicle below.
Related GalleryFomm Concept One
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