The go anywhere Aqua hybrid hovercraft concept
This futuristic, zero emissions hovercraft concept won't be gracing our wilderness zones any time soon but it definitely merits a mention. Dubbed the "Aqua Volkswagen," the concept was created by Zhang Yuhan, a 21 year old graduate in Industrial Design at Xihua University, China. The concept is a finalist submission in the CDN China Car Awards, a competition created to reward the creativity of young designers. The brief for entrants was to create a "Chinese off-road vehicle" by Volkswagen with "go-anywhere" capabilities to tackle the vast expanse of wild countryside in China.
Reminding us of the amphibious three-wheeler concept from this year's Michelin Challenge, the zero emissions hovercraft is a supported by a cushion of air and capable of crossing a range of surfaces including: lakes, rivers, wetlands, dirt roads, snow and ice. It is driven by electric and hydrogen fuel cell motors, including four propellers for the propulsion of the vehicle. The lines of this concept are "amphibious" clean, linear and simple, with equally minimalist external and internal features. It is designed for two passengers but we're just wondering how they actually get in?! Could it be that small round hatch at the rear of the vehicle, I surely hope not!
About the Author
Bridget is an experienced freelance writer, presenter and performer with a keen eye for innovative design and a passion for green technology. Australian born, Bridget currently resides in Rome and when not scribbling for Gizmag, she spends her time developing new web series content and independent cinema.
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@kmh- can you say "magnetically suspended axels"
Where are the air intakes for the lift engines? How do you steer it with neither fins in the wash or vectored thrust? This looks very good graphics\' but the designer has no grasp of how a hovercraft works or the needed control systems. I could build a better hovercraft! I\'m designing it now. If this is the winner of the design awards then I\'d hate to see the loser. Volkswagen has list the plot. Designs must be practical, they must work. If you have graduated from design school with out knowing how to consult the basics if the engineering then your just an artist with delusions of grandeur.
To make it work: Add Retractable wheels for hard smooth terrain, cambered roads, so it steers straight on them.
Add high intakes where the hatch and bonnet logo are. Make it 15% bigger to accommodate these intake volumes.
Add a hinged canopy. Make it buoyant and Add retractable buoyant booms that stabilise it if it stops on water.
I NEED A LAB!
All sorts of mobility scooter possibilities here....
Hovercraft seem to be a fundamentally flawed concept. Using all that energy to replace suspension and to reduce friction? It makes little sense to me, and if you glance at the hobby hovercraft on youtube, you soon see how imprecise is the control of something that has no physical contact with the ground.
They only really seem to have a meaningful role in situations where it is necessary to traverse very soft boggy or sandy ground.
I think you guys forget the idea of concept,
As stated by many transport design students and people who do the concepts....\"they don\'t actually have to work\"
but yer its not all terrain either: i\'d love to see it glide over a speedbump. (not sure if they have those in China mind...)
Yes hovercraft with no intakes climbs steep hill with F.F.A.R.T. traction control.
That is Far Fetched And Ridiculous (amounts of) Traction.
I believe CONCEPTS are mostly DREAMS... They represent our vision, how we WOULD LIKE to have reality...
Concepts may (and often do) inspire others to creatively criticize, add ideas, help find solutions, etc., and thus bring them to reality...
I would contemplate on the basic necessity and applicability of that type of vehicle moving along with wheeled vehicles... If we agree that we would rather have one vehicle for all purposes can we spend the money to change the road conditions so that safety is guaranteed up to - say speed of 250 km/h...? And so on.
Great looking machine. But, as with all hovercraft designs, would you want to be standing next to any of them as they passed by? The danger from flying debri would be pretty extreme.
Too bad axels can't spin in a tube of (frictionless) air. That would make more sense.
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