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For Early Adapters and Car Enthusiasts

This may have made the rounds through email, so many of you may have seen it already. However, it's the first time I've ever seen it. This is amazingly cool.


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Comments (17)

Disappearing car doors is q... (Below threshold)
steak111111:

Disappearing car doors is quite convenient - but hardly worth the time or money to have it done.

Now if someone could make Hillary disappear, I'd pay top dollar....

Very convenient, especially... (Below threshold)
Bob:

Very convenient, especially for parents dealing with kids and carseats. I wouldn't pay to have my car converted, but I'd certainly consider paying extra for the convenience of this feature on my next car. Could this be the next advance toward a "car of the future?"

I'd never pay for a convers... (Below threshold)
Proof:

I'd never pay for a conversion, but if you could get it standard or as an option from the factory, that would be tres cool!

Early "adopters", not "adap... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Early "adopters", not "adapters".

Now why didn't I think of t... (Below threshold)
Son Of The Godfather:

Now why didn't I think of that?

Too slow for safe entry and... (Below threshold)
epador:

Too slow for safe entry and exit on a dark city street in the middle of a thunderstorm, or in hot climates, all the AC escapes [heat in cold climates].

I think there's a little fa... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

I think there's a little false advertising here.

The car that they used to claim they preserve ground clearance is shown close up. On the cars where we see the full body from the side or the rear, the doors do appear to compromise the ground clearance.

To me this means that the car doors can be designed to not affect ground clearance but it affects the overall look of the car in an adverse way.

Even so, it could be used in SUVs or Crossovers without this possible negative. Actually a this would be best for a rear hatch.

I want to know what happens... (Below threshold)
Arthur:

I want to know what happens if there's an electrical problem or a crash. Can you open the door manually? (looks plausible since the door slides down - working with gravity)

Thanks for posting that. Am... (Below threshold)
mikem Author Profile Page:

Thanks for posting that. Amazing. Definitely a comer. I do wonder though how many modern structural safety engineering features were sacrificed for the convenience.
As for making the rounds through email, I doubt that there are many readers here at Wizbang stupid enough to open anything making the rounds.

As to what happens in a cra... (Below threshold)
ExSubNuke:

As to what happens in a crash, (from personal experience) if it's a rollover, most of the glass will break (climb out that way) and current doors can get jammed shut anyway. If it's a side impact, then that side's door get's jiggered. In most cases, the electrical systems will still be available to open the other door.

As for structural integrity, according to their own publications, it's a great big beam that anchors on either side of the door opening, so structural rigidity shouldn't be compromised. You might also note that all the vehicles they've currently put it on (at least in the video and publications) are body on frame vehicles, meaning the body isn't actually that much of a structural member. It bolts ONTO the chassis which is the structural member. Putting their bathtub assembly for the doors on might even IMPROVE the body on frame strucutural integrity and rigidity. You'll also note the vehicles they've put it on have no b-pillar, so there wasn't a structure there to compromise in the first place.

Unibody vehicles might be an issue though, as the body itself acts as the chassis and is an integral part of the structure. Removing the b-pillar in that case (if there is one there) probably would impact the structure, how much and if it's within acceptable limits and tolerances... that's up to testing to determine.

Me, I wouldn't pay to have it installed on a vehicle I currently own... but I'd buy a new vehicle with this technology in a heartbeat.

This is a perfect example o... (Below threshold)
perfect example:

This is a perfect example of the useless invention. A useless invention is one that solves a non-existent problem with a more expensive solution in a way that creates a larger problem.

The problem this invention solves is pretty much singular: This door provides more room to maneuver in and out of both the front and rear of the vehicle. That's really the only "problem" it solves.

To achieve it, however, one sacrifices several benefits of the standard hinged car door. Say it's raining ... just to cite one example. Opening the door in this manner exposes the entire interior to roadspray from passing vehicles. That's gonna leave a mark on the upholstery.

The problem this invention CREATES is that this door is unsafe. Because it is operated automatically, it does not account for the fact that children are usually in very close proximity to car doors. This one has the potential to decapitate a small child (certainly at the very least to strangle one.)

Speaking as a parent who has had their childs fingers caught in the manual door, I can tell you that they are very inventive in getting where they shouldn't be when parents are the least bit distracted.

There is a reason why car doors are designed the way that they are: efficiency and safety.

No amount of British accent is going to change that.

Um, all that's required to ... (Below threshold)
ExSubNuke:

Um, all that's required to avert the strangle/decapitation is a pressure sensor. Similar to the ones on garage doors.

What are the old folks goin... (Below threshold)
Lee:

What are the old folks going to use to help them get in and out of the car?

It's got to make car jacking easier. Open the door and pull them out.

Looks sweet, but I definite... (Below threshold)

Looks sweet, but I definitely wouldn't want to use it if it was snowing or raining heavily.

with a more expensive so... (Below threshold)
Brian:

with a more expensive solution
...
This one has the potential to decapitate a small child (certainly at the very least to strangle one.)

If you read their web site, they say that this is basically the same as an automatic door found on many current minivans, except turned sideways. So no more expensive, and using the same obstruction sensors already in use.

But the rain thing is a good point.

Ditto on the rain and colli... (Below threshold)

Ditto on the rain and collision points:

* In rain, the door/window acts as a splash shield, and cycle time for use (open/enter-exit/close) can be as fast as 1 second, if the door is unlocked. Cycle time in the video for the disappearing door is at least five seconds, with no shield against road splash. Five seconds in a heavy downpour means your seats just got drenched.

* Hinged doors may be crumpled in a crash, but are still likely to open even if the hinges are damaged. However, if the disappearing door is crumpled from impact, it may not fit into its retraction space. Also if the car's power is damaged (e.g., dead battery or wiring fault) there doesn't seem to be a manual open/close function included here.

As a custom install on show cars or concept cars, the disappearing door is quite "cool", in the same way that customizers have been shaving door latches off their vehicles for years. But there are generally two reasons why features shown on concept cars often do not make their way into production models: either the concept is difficult or impossible to incorporate into the manufacturing process, or else legal/liability issues prevent introduction of the feature (e.g., ground clearance too low; lights not illuminating according to legislated specs; bumper not adequate to provide minimum required crash protection, etc., etc.).

If I had the money to afford a custom, sure I would love the disappearing door to be included on it.

But not on a daily driver.

Man some of you guys didnt ... (Below threshold)
Dave:

Man some of you guys didnt read anything about it and just watched the video.

1st it has a reverse and shut off setup if a foreign object is detected . So no children will be eaten by the monster door...

2nd this would be a godsend for some of the physically handicapped people I know. Having the whole door just gone instead of in the way would be great for them.

Not that this is the best comparison, but this is how cars and new technologies are developed. Not always looking for problems and trying to solve them, but by pushing for new ideas and creativity. There was NO reason to create traction control because everyone should be following the speed limits at all time and driving within a safe speed if the weather is poor. So why develop it? Ive never seen traction control save anyone who was "behaving" while driving. Its always been at the race track or people who are pushing the performance of their car. Why develop 6 piston brake calipers? Why develop bigger and better traction in tires? Why do any of the things that have made cars "better" than they were in the late 60s?

The ultimate reason is because this is what people want. Most of you said you wouldnt pay for the conversion, but would get it on a new car if it was an option... That speaks volume about the whole concept. Most people wouldnt convert their current TV to HD with a kit either... But I bet you guys would buy a new HD tv if you were in the market.




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