Local Motors – the makers of the low-volume, crowd-sourcing-designed Rally Fighter – is shutting its doors forever. Some mixed feelings about the news would only be natural. On the one hand, the Rally Fighter was a singularly cool, unique automobile designed from the ground up by enthusiasts, for enthusiasts, with more than a foot of suspension travel front and rear and a 430-horsepower Chevy small-block V8 under the hood. On the other hand, while few were watching back in 2016, the company pivoted from making cool, super-low-volume performance off-road vehicles to building an autonomous transportation pod called “Olli”.
The transition was a lot to take in.
But the good news is that if you’ve ever wanted a Rally Fighter – or a vaguely toaster-shaped autonomous pod without any of the self-driving equipment – Local Motors is liquidating its assets. Those assets, which are spread across 443 auction lots listed on the Silicon Valley Disposition website, include a pair of Rally Fighters, two Strati EVs, and a whole lot of transportation pods.
One of the Local Motors Rally Fighters up for grabs is a 2012 model in black, and it’s the actual car that was used in filming Transformers: Age of Extinction and the eighth Fast & Furious entry, The Fate of the Furious. The other is a 2015 in a funky red, white, and blue color scheme with the larger 6.6L V8 under the hood.
Less well-known – and significantly less cool – than the Local Motors Rally Fighter is the Strati EV, which proved that it is indeed possible to essentially 3D print an entire car. The body, structure, and seats were all 3D printed, in a process that took approximately 44 hours (plus a day of milling to smooth out the printed surfaces). The pure-electric powertrain was borrowed from the Renault Twizy electric microcar, lending a top speed of about 40 mph.
And that car brings us to one of the absolute most interesting assets being liquidated: one of the world’s largest 3D printers. Built by the Thermwood Corporation, the LSAM-1040 has a print bed measuring 10 by 40 feet, which is big enough to produce more than just a full-size car body. But before you go whipping out your wallet and putting in a bid, you should know that the sale of this gargantuan industrial 3D printer is subject to final approval from Local Motors, and it needs to be removed from its current home by the end of March – a significant challenge, given that it definitely won’t fit in the bed of your F-150.
Local Motors’ closure was first reported in January of this year, after the firm struggled to continue attracting adequate funding – a tale as old as time when it comes to the difficult, manufacturing-intensive business of automotive.