GM Unveils Its Car Of Future - A Segway For Dorks!


GM today unveiled its car for the future - and as one motoring commentator quickly dubbed it, it’s a car for dorks!

Would you honestly be seen driving this?

GM's new EN-V unveiled today | GM

General Motors obviously thinks so because it’s named its 2- wheel 2-seater electric vehicle the En-V and its based on another silly idea that never took off but was billed as the future of transportation and as revolutionary as the wheel - the Segway.

The EN-V, short for Electric Networked Vehicle is in fact based on the Segway’s balanced platform with a carbon-fibre body and canopy.
The motors are powered by a lithium-ion battery, installed in its wheels which can be recharged from a normal electric wall socket.

The car was rolled out at a Chinese auto show, and billed as the solution to China’s transportation problems, as you can “park it in an apartment. ” Good idea, you wouldn’t want neighbours to see you had one in the carport.

GM told the audience that the motors let you not only accelerate, but also bring the vehicle to a stop. It can literally “turn on a dime,” is automatic or manual and could communicate with sensors in roadways.

Says GM’s statement: “EN-V reinvents the automobile by creating a new vehicle DNA through the convergence of electrification and connectivity. It provides an ideal solution for urban mobility that enables future driving to be free from petroleum and emissions, free from congestion and accidents, and more fun and fashionable than ever before.”

One imagines, the PR department worked overtime with a hyperbole dictionary to create those words.
Other facts:

  • It can go about 45 kilometres before needing recharging
  • It’s 1.52 metres long
  • It weighs 498 kilograms

I have never “got” the Segway or believed it’s the future as originally billed and many councils around the world haven’t approved its use along footpaths either. It has had limited use in businesses such as warehouses.

Bike or Segway? Give me the bike anyday

Founded in 2001 by inventor Dean Kamen, who famously hyped the pre-launch as an announcement to rival the invention of the wheel, the company was quietly sold to a UK company in January.

Warning on a Segway is encouraging

In 2006, all units sold were recalled because a software glitch was discovered. It could cause the Segway to immediately reverse and cause the rider to fall off.
Time reported that in the first four years, only 24,000 were sold globally. A year ago, the company claimed just over 50,000 had been sold.

Hardly a global revolution.




  1. anthony says:

    i much perfer the pricy electric car! that looks UGLY!

  2. Matt L says:

    If we are going to base transportation of segways then this looks much better

  3. max says:

    The only way this could ever catch on (locally) is if some city bought a couple hundred (or thousand) and made them part of a car-rental scheme (like a municipal bike scheme, just with cars).

    That way people would possibly use them. But I agree that otherwise, few people would consider this cool, and it seems to have limited other advantages that would be sufficient to overcome that initial uncoolness.

  4. Johans says:

    Motorized prams.

  5. Luke says:

    These new age cars seem to be designed for people who would be much better served by mass-transit. Not much use for those who need cars for the space, rural use etc.

  6. Jeremy Harris says:

    Ha ha, the American Car Industry… They do make me laugh…


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