On the road again
blue.cruiser ready for the public roads
With building and unveiling now completed, it’s time for the blue.cruiser to hit the highway. But of course in Germany it’s not as easy as that – first you need a license for road use. And that’s something the SolarCar has to earn:
Its three predecessors were all licensed as light electric vehicles (L7e). With the blue.cruiser the Bochum students want to go a step further and register the solar car as a conventional car (M1).
The approval procedure for this is stricter. Frank Böse of the vehicle inspection association DEKRA is on hand to advise and help the SolarCar team: “I’ve been working with the students since the design phase so they’re thoroughly prepared for the inspection and approval process,” he says. The blue.cruiser will be given a license only if it complies with the relevant national regulations. These include for example braking deceleration requirements (57 m/s²). Firm anchorage of the seatbelts and defect-free functioning of brake and indicator lights are other criteria Böse is watching out for. And the noise emitted by the blue.cruiser when traveling at 50 km/h must not exceed 74 decibels – of course for the electrically powered solar car that’s no problem.
Finally the vehicle is weighed. Frank Böse is satisfied: “The students have done a great job. They and the blue.cruiser have again earned their vehicle type approval!” Now all they have to do is register the vehicle and attach its license plate. So from now on keep a lookout in traffic – the blue.cruiser could be heading towards you!