Designed by Joe Harmon, this wooden supercar called ‘Splinter’ is built nearly entirely with wood composite materials. It is currently on display at the Essen Motor Show.
When people think of wood as a design material, they often associate it with cozy cabins or canoes, rather than as a high performance material for industry leading sports cars. But as Harmon explains on hiswebsite, wood actually has a better strength-to-weight ratio that steel or aluminium. And as an added benefit, it is also naturally renewable and completely biodegradable.
Here, the chassis, body and the majority of the wheels, interior fit out and suspension components of Splinter have been made from wood and wood composites.
The inspiration behind Splinter lies with a WWII airplane called the Havilland Mosquito. Equipped with two Rolls-Royce V12 engines, it was the fastest piston-driven plane of its era and made almost completely out of wood.
The Splinter car began as a graduate school project for Joe Harmon and he has been continuing and refining the concept ever since.