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Rinspeed SQuba Underwater Electric Car

Rinspeed sQubaIntuitively, some things shouldn’t mix like electricity and water. But, tell that to the manufacturers of the Rinspeed SQuba electric car that is capable of driving underwater. The Rinspeed SQuba underwater electric car will make its world debut at the 2008 Geneva Auto Show starting March 6.

The submersible SQuba reminds one of the James Bond car in “A Spy Who Loved Me” when Roger Moore drove an animated car underwater. Now, this animation has become a reality as the Swiss automaker says the vehicle can travel at a depth of 10 meter below any lake, pond or stream.

One electric motor drives the Rinspeed SQuba by land and two if by sea as the extra motors motivate the propellers, propelling the car like a fish. The water tight submersible car is different from amphibious military vehicles that trudge along at low speeds as the SQuba is said to move swimmingly through the water.

Now, just why would a person want to drive an electric sports car like the Rinspeed SQuba underwater? For the coolness factor of course. That’s Bond, James Bond, to you petrol driver.

Of course, you may wish to watch the video to check out this bad ass automobile for yourself.

About Kevin


Kevin is both an environmentalist and a tech guy and has been writing, editing and publishing this blog since 2007. He answers questions related to how you can use tech to go greener.

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  1. Your post on the Rinspeed SQuba was quite the interesting read! I think the video that was created to showcase this luxury car’s abilities does a very inadequate job of doing so due to poor production skills. However the main concept of the car comes through very clear: an electric scuba car! An amazing accomplishment indeed. But I must question why so much time, effort, money, and technology went into the creation of this car. Just from one look at the video, several things becomes blatantly clear. First and foremost would be the complete and utter impracticality of the vehicle. As far as I’m concerned, most people tend to only have a need for cars on dry roads rather than traversing through and under water. Secondly, from the features available in this car, even not including its underwater capabilities, it looks completely out of the price range of the average citizen, and in fact it is. I feel that innovations in technology, especially ones that are meant to be environmentally friendly, should keep in mind the everyday user. The best way for sustainable living changes to persist is if they can be easily incorporated into our daily practices. Driving would be a perfect example. The makers of Rinspeed had an opportunity to use their resources to create a great (and practical) electric car available for ordinary people such as myself. I currently drive a Honda Civic Hybrid and am constantly frustrated at the lack of vehicles hybrid drivers have to choose from, and I cannot even recall the last time I saw an electric car on the road! With rising gas prices and longer commutes, it seems that car companies would feel pressed to create more fuel efficient cars that people could actually purchase. The rapid and continued high sales of Toyota’s Prius shows that there is a great demand for these kinds of automobiles. In all fairness, I realize that Rinspeed is a German company and European cars are mostly known as luxury vehicles, but the fact remains that there is a large, untapped market that no one seems to want to touch. Is it truly that difficult to create an electric car that can be affordable to the public? It does not necessarily mean it has to be cheap, but with the Rinspeed SQuba approximated at $1.5 M it is a luxury that many cannot afford. It seemingly caters only to those elite few who’s only use for the car would be to efficiently drive it to their private beach front homes before driving it into their private beach front shores. If the Rinspeed cannot reasonably be made available for public purchase, then I at least hope that its creation will spark renewed interest in the field of electric automobiles and hopefully lead the way for future, more practical endeavors in that direction.

  2. admin

    Thanks for your input on the Rinspeed SQuba. I think the intent was to show off this show car as an example of the company’s engineering prowess. You’re right, this is not a practical car at all, only a “Wow” car.

    Many of the automakers create prototypes to wow the audiences at the car shows and create publicity for themselves. My guess is that the Rinspeed SQuba has accomplished this goal.

    If the Rinspeed SQuba were put up for sale, the owners would be the same ones who would have a Lamborghini or Bugatti in their garage rather than a Prius. Perhaps this person would even want to show up his neighbor who only has a Venturi Fetish or a Tesla Roadster in his garage.

    The Rinspeed SQuba definitely pushes the concept of a green car to its limits. But, I don’t think the automakers should be limited to only producing green cars for the masses. The rich and the show car fans need to have their fun, now don’t they?

  3. I can definitely appreciate the fact that the Rinspeed SQuba is more of a show car than a practical one, but I think therein lies the problem as to why we aren’t as technologically advanced in environmental transportation as we should be. Maybe not all automakers should be completely limited to mass producing affordable green cars but I do believe that there is a certain level of social responsibility that should come before a desire for profit or promotion. The fact of the matter is we need more green cars and they’re not being made. So I guess it’s a little frustrating to me that there are companies coming out with electric submarine cars that no one will reasonably use on a daily basis. People don’t technically need cars but our environment certainly needs more sustainable methods of travel.

  4. Sorry, my last sentence should read “People don’t technically need cars for fun but our environment certainly needs more sustainable methods of travel.”

  5. admin

    I agree that we need the manufacturers who mass-produce cars, like the Big 6 automakers to do more to create environmentally-friendly vehicles. Rinspeed, however isn’t a large automaker. They are a small specialty carmaker who designs exotic cars and retrofits classic cars. The fact that they have produced an electric car at all, in my opinion, is a step in the right direction. But, small specialty companies like this will never have a major overall impact as their market is a very small automotive niche. My frustration is more with the large automakers than with some of these small niche automotive companies.

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