One of the coolest concept cars of the past year was the Cadillac World Thorium Fuel Concept. Aptly named the WTF and with an out-of-this-world body, the Cadillac WTF shows us a glimpse of what the future might hold.
This vehicle may well come to be as is, although it’s pretty likely that it will go through a few more evolutionary changes before Thorium fuel becomes as commonplace as gasoline (or let’s face it, electricity).
Thorium is a radioactive chemical element. Thorium is about three times more abundant in nature than Uranium is, although whether or not it is abundant enough to warrant its use as a fuel in and of itself remains to be seen. Not only is it more abundant than Uranium (a somewhat comparable element), it is also about three times more abundant than tin, making it about as common as Lead.
The fact is that a vehicle like this would seem to be a portent of technology to come; Not only does the Cadillac WTF follow the trend of new concepts utilizing newer fuels, but even the look shows you where this vehicle belongs.
As far as Thorium is concerned, its relative abundance and long half-life means that it is relatively safe when compared with uranium, and thus could deliver the vast stores of energy found only with nuclear reactions, while maintaining (theoretically) safer conditions. And let’s face it, a vehicle powered by nuclear fission or fusion would need almost no fill-ups, and if you could create that while still ensuring the safety of the driver and passengers, this would be a win-win situation.
Additionally this vehicle is specifically designed to be able to last for about 100 years with no maintenance required; only the wheels would have to be adjusted every five years or so, but no additional material would need to be added. The price tag on this vehicle, should it be a production model? Your guess is as good as mine, but it would probably be cheaper than buying a new car and fueling it every several years for the next century.