It will soon be easier and cheaper to hail-a-ride, fit for your needs, that to find parking for your old car. You will no longer own your vehicle, you will share it. You can communicate with it, and the vehicle will park and charge itself.
As cities adopt autonomous vehicles, new transport solutions will emerge. In Singapore, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, self-driving taxis are now shuttling passengers on public roads. By 2020, most car manufacturers will have unveiled cars with some level of autonomous driving. Completely new vehicles are taking shape.
Today, Podbike velomobile is a new concept for personal transportation with its four wheels and protection against the weather. Tomorrow, the autonomous Podbike velomobile is a key element in a new ecosystem that has the power to change how we commute, live, work and play.
Podbike velomobile combines the fun and exercise of cycling with the comfort of being protected from the elements. Podbike velomobile is tailor-made to tackle the wet, cold and windy weather you can get in the Nordic countries. It will also comfortably fit an adult with a child and some luggage. Being partly human powered, Podbike velomobile can be cycled like a regular bike, giving you the same light exercise as an electric bike. The only difference is that Podbike velomobile is twice as fun! Regular bikes can be unpractical and unsafe, especially in harsh weather and heavy traffic. The Podbike velomobile however, will bridge the last mile between your home/ office and public transportation, or simply take you comfortably and safely from A to B.
The Podbike velomobile is versatile and can be used on bicycle roads and city roads. Less car traffic will simply make your journey an absolute joyride. It has lights and indicators make it easy to spot on city roads. With electric assist you travel at 25 km/h but up to 60 km/h with your own pedal power. Parking is a breeze. Standing upright it only takes up 1/8 of a normal parking space.
We envision stations for recharging close to all urban areas. In future, the Podbike velomobile will park itself, charge battery when needed and come to you when you ask for it. In driverless mode, the lightweight Podbike velomobile will travel at 6 km/hour, about the same speed as a person walking.
Cars are large and expensive, they congest urban areas, pollute the environment and provide zero exercise. BCG (Boston Consulting Group) predicts that the number of cars in US cities will be reduced by 60% in 2030 due to shared, self-driving light electric vehicles (LEV’s). This will cut emissions by 80% and road accidents by 90%.
As the number of cars on the road decreases, we will spend less time stuck in traffic, and the space traditionally used for cars and parking will be put to better use. In urban areas, we will start seeing smaller and more lightweight vehicles that are safer to operate autonomously. True disruption will begin when we start plugging all these vehicles into an autonomous ecosystem and linking them together.
Today, around half the world´s population live in cities. As transport becomes driverless, how we get from one point to another will vary greatly. Every day, and many times a day, you will be free to choose a mode of transport that fits your personal preferences.
Vehicles in the new ecosystem will come in all sizes and can be tailored to meet very specific needs. This flexibility in modes of transport, will, once and for all, remove our dependency on owning a car. Which ride you chose will vary according to the task and purpose of your journey. New subscription models will create endless flexibility.
Podbike velomobile is more than a vehicle. It is more than a bike, it is more than a platform. It is a vital part of the future. It is a conscious choice.