In mountainous regions like the Colombia’s Andes Region, folks still uses mule to haul goods not because they choose to, but because the treacherous terrains dictate that only animals are up to the task. While it seems like it will remain so for years to come, Italy-based Colombian designer Edgar Sarmiento (AKA Eddie Mauro, the same person who designed autonomous bus Olli) dream up a modern day mule, a mechanical transport which he calls Arriero Rural Transportation Solution, as an alternative to mules and horses.
What’s cool about Edgar’s mechanical mule is that it has no fancy bodyworks or fairings to speak off. Everything is designed to be naked which affords the vehicle to be reconfigured easily to suit the current need of the user. It is designed with a wide stance for stability and it rides high, like a mule or horse, which, along with articulated suspension setup plus wheels with outer and inner rims independent of each other wrapped in airless tires, allows it to traverse over difficult terrains. It even have a saddle-inspired seat to complete the workhorse look. Rad!
Like many concept vehicles dreamed up for the near future, Edgar’s Arriero is electrically-driven too. The central body is where you will find the batteries that powers each wheel’s regenerative braking-capable brushless motor. And yes, it is four-wheel-driven too which we imagine will be of great use when it comes to dealing with the brutal terrains of the Andes. By having motor on the wheel itself allows the main body to be kept to the minimal and also negates the need for complex drivetrain.
With so many thoughtful features put into it, it is no surprised that Edgar’s Arriero Rural Transportation Solution had the attention of the judges of Michelin Challenge Design 2016, bagging Edgar Sarmiento a 2nd place.
Images: Edgar Sarmiento.