by Brent Dirks
March 13, 2013
While braving those brutal Russian winters, a crafty group of men from Tula Oblast have created the ultimate iOS device accessory – an iPad-controlled car. According to Red Hot Russia, which provides a translation from one of the participant’s blog, the group chose an old 1990 Opel Vectra with almost 200,000 miles on the odometer. Even though it was “almost dead and rotten inside,” it still moved, which was the important part. Here’s a video that shows the car in action. Click here if you can’t see it. Originally, the Opel was named James Bond’s car after the famous scene in “Tomorrow Never Dies” that sees the intrepid MI6 agent avoid a host of bad guys by driving his car remotely with a cell phone. But now, the car has been dubbed the Opel Virta. The pictured app to drive the car is being used on an old third-generation iPad. Once the weather warms up, the group is planning to do some more work on the vehicle:
Control through internet will be added a little bit later, when it becomes warmer, since the weather turned out to be the main problem. While doing tests outside, I froze like a dog. Besides, the tablet screen quickly becomes wet and fingers numb and lose sensitivity, making tapping on the screen more difficult. Also, in the street it’s difficult to see clearly the picture from the rear view mirror – the screen brightness is not sufficient. Plus the windshield is quickly covered with snow. So far we have done two field tests. The first one went quite bad, the second was better, but lacked the real action. Though we got permission of the Tula driving school to use their track, early during the second test our cooling system pipe blasted and we had to stop. Hopefully, until the spring Uncle Vasya will repair the pipe, and when it gets warmer we will drive our Opel to an open area and arrange some hellish action.Sounds like fun, guys.