Hiriko Folding Car a Solution for Europe and Beyond?

By Matthew Askari | August 16, 2012
The crush of seven billion people on earth, coupled with an increasing trend towards urbanization, is affecting the way we think about mobility and transportation. European style microcars have arrived in the U.S., automakers are experimenting with varied technologies and fuels, and no one solution seems to have been decided upon. This leaves room for experimentation, and all sorts of wacky, potentially significant ideas. Can a folding car be one of them? Hiriko believes so. The Hiriko project claims to be a new, potential solution for our increasing urbanism. Hiriko claims to be "a new way of understanding the relationship between city, its citizens, and their vehicles." To us, it looks like a Smart car that can do the Dougie (though decidedly more mechanical than Kate Upton). The "folding" car can adjust its height by sliding up to fit in ultra compact spaces, or by sliding back down—to unexpectedly resemble a miniature Volkswagen Beetle—when in driving mode. We could see the $16,000 car catching on in Europe and in cities such as Manhattan or San Francisco in time, but for much of the U.S. it wouldn't be practical, especially when you have Raptors running around. You can see the all-electric Hiriko folding car cruise around the streets of Basque country, Spain, in the video below.

Clip HIRIKO from HIRIKO Driving Mobility on Vimeo. Clip HIRIKO from HIRIKO Driving Mobility on Vimeo.

Source: Hiriko project