The Shweeb is going to save the world. But I'll get back to that later. For now, read the sales pitch: 'You jump into an aerodynamic capsule and race like a bullet for three laps. With seven gears to play with, it’s easy to get up to your top speed. Feel the adrenalin kick in as you fly around curves swinging out 60 degrees! You soar 4m above the pond and then miss the ground by inches! Race against your friends or the clock.' Woo-hoo!
The Shweeb Racing Circuit, which opened at Agroventures Adventure Park, Rotorua, in 2007, is New Zealand's newest adrenalin destination. But, in addition to it being really fun, it has higher aspirations.
With the world becoming increasingly urban, traffic is gridlocked, parking lots are full, and we're all breathing toxic air. Plus we're not getting anywhere all that quickly. We might as well walk, or stay home. Instead of building more fuel-efficient cars, the people at Shweeb suggest building less cars altogether.
How about a network of recumbent cycles, suspended from monorail tracks in a vast interconnected network of lines? Shweebs can in theory reach speeds of 56 mph. Stick a few together and the efficiency increases. Bingo – zero emissions and the obesity epidemic solved in one aerodynamic swoop! Love it. RM