Thursday, January 04, 2007

University Students Take on Detroit Innovation requires open mind and enthusiasm

The article “A Car Built by Two, Fast and Way Cool,” from The New York Times offers a refreshing view of modern day car designers with a dash of bracing business basics.

If you see a gap in the market and want to produce a product, don’t let a lack of experience stop you. It certainly didn’t stymie Eyal Angel or Seth Rosenberg, two Hofstra University mechanical engineering students who built a sports car based on a combination of coursework, library and Internet research.

They developed an understanding of suspension design, electrical systems, fuel pumps, cooling and exhaust systems. They designed a paper mock up of a chassis and developed a computer model and from that they welded together a chassis composed of tubular steel parts in Rosenberg’s grandfather’s Floral Park machine shop.

The roadster is modeled after the Ariel Atom 2, a British racecar. It has a 2.4 liter turbocharged engine and is designed to vroom from zero to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds or less.

With prototype costs at $12,000, Rosenberg and Angel plan to market the car at $45,000, a fraction of the cost of a brand name sports car.

If you want to build a stronger business, don’t let inexperience slow you down. Research, trial and error win the day.

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