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Customer story

Hopper Mobility: Rapid prototypes to innovate transportation

Hopper Mobility is an electric vehicle startup founded in 2021. With MakerVerse, the startup quickly and cost-effectively tested better-performing housing for their steering wheel dashboard and mirrors. MakerVerse's fast lead times and instant quotations were deciding factors for Hopper Mobility's sourcing decision. 

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Industry: Mobility

Company Location: Augsburg, Germany

Company Size: 10+

Use Case: Prototyping

AM Technology Used: Multi-Jet Fusion

Material Used: PA-12

Traffic jams. Limited infrastructure. Carbon emissions. All of these are challenges to making cities more livable and sustainable. 
 

Hopper Mobility plans to change that and offer a comfortable, sustainable alternative to the car. This Germany-based startup offers an agile vehicle combining the best features of a car and an e-bike. That means offering weather protection, storage space, and other comforts, along with solar panels and access to bike paths.  

As Hopper Mobility prepares for final production, this startup is focused on optimizing performance and comfort as much as possible. During this phase, any design modification that reduces weight and improves the customer experience is a win. It's critical to validate these designs quickly and cost-efficiently via additive manufacturing.  

With these challenges in mind, Hopper Mobility chose MakerVerse, the on-demand platform for industrial parts. Fast lead times and competitive prices gave Hopper Mobility the needed rapid prototyping capabilities.  

The MAKERVERSE impact

8 days

lead time

Instant

quote received

The two prototypes we ordered from MakerVerse arrived in less than two weeks and met all our requirements. This greatly benefits us, as getting our parts quickly helps us speed up our design and development process.

"

"

Martin Halama
Managing Director and Co-Founder at Hopper Mobility

The challenge

With the pilot phase and final production approaching, the team identified areas where they could replace existing parts with better-performing and lower-weight ones.  

One potential improvement was the upper and lower housing used in the steering wheel dashboard. With this new design, Hopper Mobility wanted to house electrical units, a display screen, and several buttons.  

Another potential improvement they wanted to validate was the side housing for side-view mirrors and left/right turning indicators. This new design would streamline two assembly units into a single housing.  

With these design improvements identified, Hopper Mobility needed a way to quickly and cost-efficiently get their hands on the parts to validate the designs.  

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A 3D printed part with MJF technology

The solutions

MakerVerse's instant quoting proved invaluable to Hopper Mobility.  

After they uploaded their designs,  AI-powered algorithms compared the design to millions of data points to provide an instant and competitive quote. Instant quotes helped the team quickly compare prices before deciding on MakerVerse.  

The range of technologies and materials on the MakerVerse platform was also crucial to Hopper Mobility. They decided to validate their designs using Multi-Jet Fusion technology, a powder bed fusion technology for polymers. The parts were made from PA-12, a polyamide that combines high strength with long-term stability.  

An essential consideration for Hopper Mobility was sustainability. The company only uses fair and sustainable supply chains, with final assembly happening locally in Germany. MakerVerse's network of 700+ printers in Europe ensures the team can source parts close to home.  

While the price was an important consideration, so was speed. Once the team placed their order, MakerVerse's additive manufacturing experts ensured a fast turnaround time and speedy delivery. The lead time was just eight days. 

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The results

Hopper Mobility aims to reshape urban mobility and offer a viable, sustainable alternative to cars. As the team continues fine-tuning its innovative vehicle design before final production, it can leverage the MakerVerse platform for reliable, affordable parts and fast turnaround times.  

This speed and reliability are essential to Martin Halama, Managing Director and Co-Founder at Hopper Mobility. "Being able to improve our designs and easily test them out is a huge benefit for us," he said. "We're looking forward to prototyping more with MakerVerse."  

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