The three concept cars at Dutch Design Week seem to have been derived from the set of Blade Runner, Prometheus, or some other intriguing science fiction film. The ample use of ‘greenhouse’ cabins provides the occupants with virtually unimpeded views of the surroundings. The wheels seem almost square. And where one would expect the driver to sit, there is now a large screen that allows you to work, find information, or watch videos while riding in the car.
EZ-GO, EZ-PRO and EZ-ULTIMO can all drive entirely on their own. The concept cars were designed by DDW partner Renault. As pioneer and European market leader in the field of electric mobility, Renault has seized the opportunity to share its innovative vision of the mobility solutions of the year 2030 at DDW. In addition to the remarkable technology, the concept is emphatically based on the car as an integral element of our ‘connected society’.
Vehicles, devices, buildings, roads and other elements of the urban architecture are increasingly able to generate and share data, and the network of all of those connected components is a vital element of the Internet of Things. Cities that use these data flows to make life more enjoyable and pleasant for their residents are known as ‘smart cities’. With these three concept cars, Renault has intelligently adapted to the countless new opportunities now available.
Each of the three electric vehicles supports a variety of high-quality data connections, and high-speed Internet networks make it convenient and efficient to work from the car. The monitors installed in the cabin allow you to update your agenda, take notes, read your e-mail, hold conversations via Skype, and transform the car into a virtual meeting room as you drive along, while the car itself shares the latest information about your journey. That means your commute will no longer be ‘wasted time’, as the car transforms into a mobile workplace.
Car2Car and Car2X network
Renault’s innovative concept cars are also constantly connected with two other high-quality data networks. The WiFi-like Car2Car network supports a real-time connection with other vehicles in the immediate vicinity. That way, the car knows exactly when other vehicles brake or change lanes. A computer is constantly analysing the information and can proactively brake or swerve to avoid accidents.
A similar C2X network allows the ‘cars of the future’ to constantly exchange information with the surrounding infrastructure. In the future, ‘smart roads’ will be able to use the data to manage traffic flows more efficiently, such as switching traffic lights from red to green based on the number of vehicles approaching. In fact, since vehicles will be able to ‘agree’ which one has the right-of-way, stop lights might actually become entirely unnecessary.
Renault has also thought of a way to reduce the dramatically increasing traffic from parcel delivery services. EZ-PRO concept allows for the simple installation of multi-purpose containers, called ‘pods’. Any transporter affiliated with the platform can easily reserve a place in the pod or book the entire pod for deliveries. As companies no longer need to drive their own delivery vans through the city, they can deliver parcels or supply shops faster, safer, more efficiently and more sustainably.