The FitCar PPV does exactly what it says on the tin – keeps you fit while you drive along. How? There’s a bicycle mechanism where the pedals used to be, obviously. And no, it’s not the 1st of April.
FitCar decided that the hours many of us spend in traffic each day is criminally wasteful. “We are increasingly time-poor, and unfit, the FitCar PPV provides at least part of the solution to these two problems,” a spokesman explained.
How does the FitCar work?
In this modified Audi A4, the pedals normally found in your car are replaced with bicycle pedals, while braking duty moves to a steering wheel-mounted control. The pedals are connected to a flywheel that helps modulate your pedal power into application of the accelerator. There are gears, of sorts, with three settings available. These are ‘drive slow’, ‘drive fast’ and ‘no drive’. They pertain to in-traffic, motorway and standstill situations respectively.
The project is a collaboration between Saudi-based inventor, Nasser Al Shawaf and Dutch engineering company, BPO.
The A4 was picked for its cabin ergonomics and the fact that you can comfortably pedal given the room available. It’s prototype number two, with the first working car being a Smart.
How many calories can you burn and is it safe?
FitCar reckons you can burn 300 calories every 30 minutes. That sounds like very sweaty work, especially given the concentration driving requires a lot of the time anyway.
That begs the question, is it safe? Again, FitCar is fairly confident. “Once you get in the car and drive it, it is intuitive, easy to control and safe – I would encourage anybody to give it a try” said founder and managing director of BPO, Oscar Brocades Zaalberg.
All in all, it seems an interesting idea. It’s a good way of getting your exercise when your day-to-day routine doesn’t allow time for it. Turning up to work all sweaty and out of breath doesn’t sound all that appealing, though.
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