America's Local Motors made headlines with its last major project, the crowdsourced off-road Rally Fighter, and now it's set to inspire driving enthusiasts anew with a new lightweight sports car. Not that the car will be designed in-house, of course—once again, it's up to skilled designers and engineers, crowdsourced from across the globe, to develop the car's new platform.
The company already held a design competition back in June to find an inspiring external form for a new, small sports car, which resulted in Italian designer Michele Anoe's 'Strati' vision emerging victorious. It isn't clear whether this design will find its way onto the new sports car, but the latest contest is specifically aimed at developing a suitable front-engined, rear-drive platform.
Like previous contests from Local Motors, there are cash prizes in it for the winning entries—up to $7,500 for the overall winner, this time around—as well as the impressive accolade of putting a brand-new, exciting sports car on the roads. The company says the vehicle could hit the roads in under two years, illustrating one major benefit of the crowdsourcing process: companies like Local Motors can be much more dynamic in the market, developing vehicles far faster than lumbering global firms.
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Designers will have to stick to a set layout for the vehicle but beyond that, the contest invites innovation. Just as the Strati concept proved, and the Rally Fighter has already demonstrated, such an open platform for ideas has huge potential. Contest winners will be announced on September 18, 2014.