GE, Local Motors Team Up For Future Appliance Designs

The maker of the Rally Fighter, a vehicle that looks like a race car but rides like a luxury vehicle, is teaming up with GE. The company, Local Motors, combines co-creation and micro-manufacturing to bring hardware innovations to market quickly. Its global co-creation community is made up of enthusiasts, hobbyist innovators and professionals.

In a recent press release, GE announced a partnership with Local Motors to launch a new model for the manufacturing industry. The partnership will pair co-creation and micromanufacturing to build and commercialize the next evolution of various GE products. Focused on speeding the time from mind to market, the partnership will leverage advanced manufacturing processes and an open innovation approach to engineering — delivering benefits for consumers and enterprise alike.

GE Executive Director of Global Innovation Steve Liguori said, “At GE over the past years, we’ve redefined our approach to innovation, focusing on R&D as well as co-creation, open collaboration and partnership, which has allowed us to engage new audiences and develop a following across various industry sectors. Today, a new era of manufacturing is dawning — and with Local Motors, we are pioneering the future of work, fast tracking a new model for the manufacturing industry, and improving and expanding GE’s product offering to better meet future customer needs.”

The open platform, FirstBuild, will officially launch in the summer of 2014 and will be the home for a global community of innovators to prototype, iterate and refine existing GE products, as well as surface new designs. The most popular innovations may then be selected for testing, rapid prototyping and small volume production at the partnership’s microfactory, which will be open to the public.

The first set of projects will focus on GE Appliances and the future of cooking. Judging by the look of the Rally Fighter, this partnership could be just the thing to revolutionize the appliance and kitchen market. Or at the very least, it will be an interesting experiment combining crowdsourcing, manufacturing and a major American company with some clout. What do you think?

As a bonus, check out the Local Motors Rally Fighter in action below:

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