In addition to the three principles I mentioned in my last entry regarding the success of designs/systems in relation to their sustainability, there are two other underlying factors that will guide our approach at Local Motors not to just providing a sustainable product, but to serve a bigger goal of educating consumers by example on how cars should be made and how the methods of current auto manufacturers are lacking in these areas:
If you keep the design simple (yet still effective in its intended use) you also maintain its flexibility to adapt to the users needs as they change over time. Understandably, uncertainty is the biggest roadblock to sustainability. Therefore, flexibility is the key to sustainable design. By keeping your design simple, you allow yourself, or the consumer in some cases to "re-invent" it as time progresses and needs change with little interruption on the core design and the energy used to manufacture those core aspects of the vehicle.
We plan to make this possible by providing the core capabilities of what the vehicle(s) we produce will need to perform their main function at a class leading level, while maintaining flexibility by allowing the consumer to customize and repair as needed over time while reusing the core components.
More details on what the core components will be to come...