Would You Drive This? Car Full Of Gel Edition

Illustration for article titled Would You Drive This? Car Full Of Gel Edition

Let’s imagine that, in the very near future, there’s been a breakthrough in nanotechnology. One of the results of this breakthrough is a sort of multi-purpose nanotech gel that’s can effectively replace the entire interior of a car. Would you drive a car filled with nothing but a gray goop?

(This is the second in a sort-of series called Would You Drive This? where I come up with some stupid car idea and see if you’d drive it.)


Let me describe this gel and the car in a bit more detail. The gel is sort of a opaque, pebbly gray color, and has the consistency somewhere between Jello pudding and really thick mucous. The tiny nanotech machines inside the polymer structure of the gel are capable of dynamically adjusting the rigidity and energy-absorption properties of the gel.

This means that the gel is incredibly good at protecting valuable objects, like human bodies, from damage in severe kinetic energy situations – like a car wreck.

So, let’s say that at least one company has built an amazing car that uses this new technology. It’s a sleek, great-looking sports car, all manual and designed for as much driving satisfaction as possible, a lovely, let’s say V12 engine, and it’s a fucking dream to drive.

Inside, though, there’s no seats or dashboard or anything like that you can see. It’s just filled with grey goop. To drive, you just slosh on in, feel in front of you for the steering wheel and shifter and pedals (they’re there, you just can’t really see them), and the goop conforms around your body to support you exactly as needed.


All instruments are on a HUD projected on the windshield, and other controls (lights, HVAC, radio, wipers, etc.) are all voice-controlled. Oh, and the HVAC system actually heats and cools the gel! On a cold day, it feels amazing.

The goop feels slightly tacky, but it’s not really damp. Just a little clammy. It doesn’t really stain anything, but bits of it can end up in your shoes or underwear. As the weight shifts in the car, you can feel it tighten and stiffen or loosen accordingly. It has the potential to be vastly better than any car seat you’ve ever been in, support-wise.


Maybe it’s a little damp, sometimes.

So, that’s pretty much it: would you drive a goop-filled car? Are you down with the whole idea of goop-interior’d cars in general, in case the idea spreads to all vehicles?


Let me know, so I can know if this grey goop I found in my sink is valuable or not.

Senior Editor, Jalopnik • Running: 1973 VW Beetle, 2006 Scion xB, 1990 Nissan Pao, 1991 Yugo GV Plus, 2020 Changli EV • Not-so-running: 1977 Dodge Tioga RV (also, buy my book!: https://rb.gy/udnqhh)

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When did Jalopnik turn into a fetish site? I mean, I can’t be the ONLY one turned on right now.