A design student Ryan Schlotthauer has designed a concept vehicle, called Höga, that you could assemble by yourself at home. The idea, which has caused a lot of talks, is based on an imaginary collaboration between Ikea and Renault born to give life to the super-compact Höga (tall, in Swedish) that would cost you only $6,5000.
But do not look for it because, at the moment, it is not in the catalog. In reality, it is just a clever bachelor thesis from Ryan Schlotthauer. Designed as the ultimate “kit car,” this tiny teeny vehicle adapts IKEA’s design philosophy of production, packaging, and practical use to give the users a comfortable ride that’s highly functional. This is combined with Renault’s advanced mobility platform to create an urban commuter with sustainability in mind.
The Höga IKEA mobility concept aims to be “clever, low cost and sustainable,” without any compromise to passenger safety, usable interior space, or ease of use. This sounds like quite an impossible task for such a tiny vehicle, but it’s achievable—on paper.
The curious vehicle has too many good ideas to stick around. With seats for two adults, it is only 1.8 meters high and 2.3 meters long, substantially taller and shorter than its natural rival, the Citroën Ami (1.39 m and 2.41 m). The colors are those of the Swedish building giant: the body is a nice bright yellow, while the interiors are partially blue. The shape of the car is inspired by the classic Bauhaus principle of clean and purposeful design.
The Höga emerges as a simple yet effective vehicle. It can be assembled by one person in few hours thanks to its simple LEGO-like attachable frame elements in a perfectly symmetrical design. There are 374 total parts and 114 individual parts that need to be fixed before the Höga can be used to meander between traffic. The skateboard platform of the vehicle houses four individual moving wheels, the battery pack, brakes, and the respective suspensions.
Höga is sustainable: the skateboard is upcycled, and most parts are recyclable, so it won’t create waste even after the end of its life cycle.
In Schlotthauser’s imagination, small does not mean little room. The interior is highly customizable to accommodate everything from extra luggage, strollers to even a bicycle. Speaking of the cabin, you get a steering wheel, a large display, and the possibility to use your own device for entertainment. The passengers can enter from the front as the windscreen opens completely, and the rear also opens up identically to load more oversized luggage.
An electric car we can assemble ourselves would be nice to have that option in the future, even if badly assembled vehicles could pose a safety risk to the owner and to pedestrians and other cars. With proper assembly control, it could be an interesting idea. But for now, it is just a concept on paper.