Airbus unit unveils 3D-printed electric motorcycle

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Berlin (AP) – What weighs 77 pounds, goes 50 mph (80 kph) and looks like a Swiss cheese on wheels? An electric motorcycle made from tiny aluminum alloy particles using a 3D printer. European aeronautics giant Airbus unveiled the ‘Light Rider’ <http://www.lightrider.apworks.de/> in Germany on Friday. Manufactured by its subsidiary APWorks, a specialist in additive layer manufacturing, the motorcycle uses hollow frame parts that contain the cables and pipes. The frame weighs just 13 pounds, about 30 percent less than conventional e-motorbikes. APWorks chief executive Joachim Zettler said the complex, branched hollow structure wouldn’t have been possible with conventional production technologies such as milling or welding. The company is taking orders for a limited run of 50 motorbikes, costing 50,000 euros ($56,095), plus tax, each. They’ll have a range of 37 miles (60 kilometers).

(Sven Hoppe/dpa via AP)
(Sven Hoppe/dpa via AP)