Kickstarter is a crowd-funding website that allows artists, inventors and entrepreneurs to fund their dream creative projects and make them a reality. Here are three of the most exciting car projects to be found on Kickstarter.
Helping cash-strapped filmmakers, musicians, artists and designers bring their creative projects to life is what Kickstarter is all about. It's a way for creative types to source the required amount of funding from the public for their projects i. Since its launch in 2009, Kickstarter has seen 5.3 million people pledge a total of $895 million USD to fund 52,000 projects i. Everything from short films to IT gadgets, and video games to art exhibitions have been funded. Creators must set a funding target and deadline, and if backers like the idea they can pledge a donation towards it i. However if the required amount of funding within the allocated time span is not achieved, the projects will not receive anything i.
CUER: The UK's Number One Solar Car Team
Status: Funded! Raised £10,524 of £10,000 goal
The Cambridge University Eco Racing (CUER) team also required funding to build a racing car, however this one runs completely on solar poweri. The team of 60 Cambridge University students needed funds to complete the construction of their innovative solar car so that it could be raced in the 2013 World Solar Challengeii. The CUER solar car had a more aerodynamic design than usual, with solar tracking plates housed beneath a transparent canopy rather than on a large flat paneli.
On the last day of the funding period, the CUER team raised their funding goal with the help of 192 backers. This crowd-funding success allowed the team to head to the 2013 World Solar Challenge, a 3000km race which ran from Darwin to Adelaide in Octoberi. Unfortunately, the CUER team suffered an accident in the testing phase of the competition before the official race started, causing them to withdraw due to safety concernsi. However the team took this setback in their stride, travelling in convoy to Adelaide and using the competition to test their solar panels and solar concentration system, as well as assisting other teams tracksidei. The CUER team now has their sights set on the 2015 World Solar Challengev!
On the Salt: Kent Fuller's Last Car
Status: Funded! Raised $35,957 of $32,900 USD goal
An iconic figure of the golden era of drag racing, Kent Fuller has assembled over 300 race cars in his illustrious career as an expert chassis builder and has pioneered innovative designs such as the 3-point roll cagei. Kickstarter was used to help fund the now 79-year-old chassis builder's costs to construct his last car - a streamliner designed to break land speed records on the salt flats in Utahi.
In May 2013 the mission to fund Fuller's 7.6m long monocoque land speed car was completed, with $35,957 USD raised by 282 Kickstarter backersvii. This made Fuller's streamliner the first crowd-funded competition vehicleviii.
FortuneSport Rt.S- Building the American Super Car
Status: Has raised $36,341 of $600,000 USD goal
FortuneSport is a small American company which wishes to raise funds to finish building the Rt.S, a $95,000 price point sports car prototypei. Almost a decade in the making, the Rt.S Concept is a mid-engine, rear drive sports coupe that has pushrod rear and front suspension and boasts over 425 horsepowerix. The idea was to create a "street legal racing car", with a racing specification roll cage built into the chassisix.
The Rt.S concept car is partly built with 85% of the engineering complete, however FutureSport is seeking funding to improve the build quality, in particular applying carbon fibre bodywork and creating a new interiorix. The company faces a few hurdles in reaching its goal - at the time of writing there is just over a week left to fundraise the necessary $563,000 USD!
Kickstarter has enabled the funding of several incredible projects with many more underway. Since 12 November 2013, Kickstarter is open to projects based in Australia and New Zealandsx. So far, Australia-based Kickstarter projects include business ideas such as unique custom creations, iPhone apps and a 3D printing solution - hopefully with many more to come!