Unlike many of my childhood friends, I was never that interested in cars. I never knew that much about them nor even cared. At least not as much as my friend did. So, when the discussion turned into cars, I just zoned out and thought about something else. What I, however, was extremely passionate about was computers. I can still remember the excitement I had in the mid-nineties when I had saved up 7000 Finnish marks (about 1700 EUR) from my first summer job. My father assisted me with an additional 5000 and I was able to buy the components for a new PC with a Pentium 90 processor. A lot has changed since then, but not my excitement in new technologies.
Six life-saving apps for new mobility
The paradigm shift to electric, connected, and automated vehicles is often compared to the shift from mobile phones to smartphones. This is not only true from the user’s perspective, with a superior user experience of the device itself, but from the enabling effect – just like smartphones enabled a multitude of new value in all thinkable fields.
From the computer to the smartphone to the new mobility, the technology that is now rising in mobility will unlock many positive things and those things will be larger than you and me. And they will be necessary. The scholars at Delft University1 have outlined six inspiring goals we are moving towards zero-emission, zero energy, zero congestion, zero accident, zero empty, and zero cost. Let’s explore them.
- Zero Emission – road transport account for around 20% of the CO2 emissions in Europe. This pollution has a big impact on our and our environment’s health. Electric cars have zero tailpipe emissions and by using renewable energy sources the total environmental impact of EVs (including materials) is approximately one-quarter of petrol or diesel-driven vehicles.
- Zero Energy – Moving requires energy but it makes all the difference where the energy is coming from. This process is referred to as Well-to-Wheel, the total energy chain. The total energy required to move an electric vehicle is much smaller than with vehicles using traditional internal combustion engines. For example, it is already possible to build energy-positive vehicles using current solar technology.
- Zero Congestion – We all hate to sit in traffic jams, and we are already heavily relying on navigation services to avoid some of them. With the rise of shared data and connected vehicles, we can move towards more efficient traffic. We are already seeing many interesting business models around shared vehicles and on-demand ridesharing (such as MOIA, Share Now, BlaBlaCar and Kyyti).
- Zero Accident – We humans cause around 95% of all traffic accidents. We have already now modern cars driving on the streets that have the intelligence to help us to avoid accidents. Eventually, we will be comfortable in letting the car take us safely where we want to go.
- Zero Empty – The current situation is that most private and commercial vehicles go underutilized. For example, 50% of logistics vehicles are driving without cargo. This means that there is a significant opportunity to make things more efficient.
- Zero Cost – We have seen many different technological disruptions where we as customers simply get more value with less cost than before. Today, for example, we can buy a music subscription for 10 euros a month and put 30 million songs in our pocket. Do you remember how it was 25 years ago with music? With mobility-as-a-service innovations and the advancement of technology will eventually lead to exceptional customer value, more effective operations and fewer costs for everybody.
Welcome new mobility
These goals are making me extremely excited about new vehicles and mobility. The goals will be achieved quickly, and they will require great systemic changes in technology, novel business models, culture, human behaviour and policy making. Our work with customers such as Aimo Park, E.on and Virta are the proof that these pieces are now starting to align together. Our evolutionary Good Growth concept is an excellent starting point to start to tackle these issues. There is still alot of work to be done and this work should be done together. This is the future we at Gofore are working towards. Welcome New Mobility.
1 Rieck, F.G.; Machielse, C.; van Duin, J.H.R (2017). Automotive, the Future of Mobility.