Thinking Tech

Superbus hopes to turbocharge mass transit

Superbus hopes to turbocharge mass transit

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Cross a Lamborghini with a school bus and you would probably get something like the aptly-named Superbus.

Cross a Lamborghini with a school bus and you'd probably get something like the aptly-named Superbus.

The futuristic car, which boasts a top speed of 155 miles per hour and seating for 23 passengers, was recently unveiled before a group of awestruck teenagers in the Netherlands.

What they saw was a one-of-a-kind 50-foot long stretch vehicle comprised of strong, yet lightweight carbon fiber body and a Li-on battery-powered electric motor system capable of 530 bhp. It also comes equipped with a navigation system, obstacle detection, communication system, fail safe system and control system along with standard upscale amenities like TV and internet.

Dutch astronaut Wubbo Ockels, who spearheaded its development, told the youngsters that he originally conceived of the Superbus as an alternative to trains, which he felt were too slow and were limited  to certain destinations. Three years and $18 million dollars later, his team has produced a transport prototype that cleverly combines the aerodynamics of a race car with the eco-friendly functionality of a mass transit automobile

While the Superbus can be driven on city streets and highways, Ockels stated that the vehicle would run most efficiently if it had its own lane, allowing for travel at higher speeds.

Dvice has reported that the Dutch government is "losing interest in the project," but a recent report in the United Arab Emirates Publication The National suggests that government officials are considering using the Superbus to shuttle people back and forth between Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

It's scheduled to be showcased in Dubai on Sunday at the World Exhibition of the International Association of Public Transport.

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Tuan Nguyen

Contributing Editor

Contributing Editor Tuan C. Nguyen is a freelance science journalist based in New York City. He has written for the U.S. News and World Report, Fox News, MSNBC, ABC News, AOL, Yahoo! News and LiveScience. Formerly, he was reporter and producer for the technology section of ABCNews.com. He holds degrees from the University of California Los Angeles and the City University of New York's Graduate School of Journalism. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure