Michel de Broin, a Montreal artist, has created perhaps one of the most environmentally friendly automobiles ever. In 2005, he took a 1986 Buick Regal, gutted it, and replaced its running gear with pedals, calling it the "Shared Propulsion Car." In an early video of the passenger-powered car, it navigates New York traffic with a few impatient drivers, but no big problems. The Buick, with its super-slow acceleration, is stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic just like everyone else. We assume the passengers arrive at their destination safely, if not tired and perhaps in better shape. Broin describes the car on his Web site:
"In this project, all superfluous devices were removed from an 86' Buick Regal – the engine, suspension, transmission and electrical system – thereby reducing the weight of the vehicle whilst preserving its appearance. It was then equipped with 4 independent pedal and gear mechanisms that make it possible for passengers to form the self-propulsion group. A cutting edge transmission technology was developed to transmit the power supplied by the passengers to the drive wheels and to vary the reduction ratios between cyclists and wheels, so as to ensure their progressive coupling for start-ups. With a top speed of around 15 km/h, the vehicle's resistance to the culture of performance is raised to an unprecedented level.

However, in December of 2007, Broin took the car back to Canada, where it didn't exactly make fans with the Toronto police. It's hard to make out exactly why the Canadian cops weren't happy with the Buick, but apparently it has something to do with safety. Watch the video and see for yourself.

[Source: micheldebroin.org via blogto.com]



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