Libyan Leader Gaddafi Turns To Car Design

September 1, 2009

It’s hard to believe that it has now been 40 years since Libyan leader colonel Muammar Gaddafi first came to power. In a week of events designed to celebrate the milestone, Gaddafi has also unveiled a new prototype vehicle that he designed himself and is destined for production.

The vehicle, which has been dubbed “The Rocket”, was unveiled for the first time on Monday at the end of an African Union summit in Tripoli, Libya's capital. Its official name is Saroukh el-Jamahiriya (Libyan Rocket) and is described as a five-passenger sedan with maximum security.

The car features a rather conventional body but its front and rear have been designed to resemble the fore and aft of a rocket. Safety elements include numerous airbags, an inbuilt electronic defence system, and a collapsible bumper.

The project was funded by the Libyan Arab Domestic Investment Company, which is planning to set up a factory next month in Tripoli to start production. Production of the actual prototype was handled by Italian manufacturer Tesco TS and is said to have cost upwards of $2.85 million.

[Der Spiegel]

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