There's a lot of buzz about electric cars these days, but most of these cars are still, well, cars. That means they're big, bulky, and too often used to transport one single person while the other seats remain empty. 

Jim Motavalli has already enthused about the potential for gyro-balanced commuter vehicles to attract the lone commuter. Advocates say they could open up the benefits of motorcycles by offering the same speed and agility as a scooter or bike, but with the protection and comfort of a car. Featured in Jim's earlier post, the C1 from Lit Motors is among the frontrunners of this new breed of vehicle.  

So when a new video profiling the young company landed in our inboxes, we thought we'd take a closer look. 

Lit Motors C1

Photo: Lit Motors

Although it looks a little like a slicker, more turbocharged, and considerably more expensive version of the sun-and-human powered ELF, the C1 is nothing like any of the mainstream transportation options on the market right now. Reaching a top speed of 120 mph, and with a claimed range of 200 miles per charge, the C1 provides Tesla-like performance stats, not to mention the option of zipping through urban traffic, but at a fraction of the cost. (The starting price for the initial run of 1,000 vehicles, which will begin being released onto the market in 2014, is $24,000.)

electronically-controlled gyro system in a C1

Photo: Lit Motors

Key to how Lit Motors is differentiating the C1 from other motorcycles is the electronically-controlled gyro system, which means the vehicle is entirely self balancing. It also features seat belts, multiple airbags, and a steel-reinforced chassis, leaving the driver fully enclosed from the elements. The C1 also boasts climate control and a powerful sound system too.

Oh, and you can carry a passenger when you need to too. (Yes, it does look quite "cozy", doesn't it?)

Lit Motors c1, which can carry two people

Photo: Lit Motors

Check out this short segment from, featuring interviews with C1 designer and Lit Motors' founder Daniel Kim, as well as Ryan James, the company's chief marketing officer, for more on the motivations behind this fascinating piece of automotive design.

Related on MNN:

Is it a motorbike or a car? A closer look at Lit Motors' C1
This two-wheeled electric commuter vehicle that balances itself may be the next big thing in urban transportation.