Renault's EZ-GO Driverless Concept Could Redefine Ridesharing in Cities
Renault's vision for the future of transportation can be seen in its latest concept vehicle, the EZ-GO. Unveiled at the 2018 Geneva Auto Show, the unit is designed for ridesharing or riding pools.
Read on to learn more about the EZ-GO and Renault's plan to make the concept car available by 2022.
Autonomous, Electric Ridesharing
Renault's EZ-GO offers seamless rides for busy locations and highly populated cities. Without a steering wheel and pedals, the unit is SAE-L4 driverless – most likely operating on a fixed route. Local residents are provided access to the car via a smartphone app or stations around the city.
The six-passenger unit features a top speed of 30 mph. In application, the EZ-GO would likely require its own lane on city roads, as it could contribute to congestion. On a positive note, the concept unit would be very safe to travel in (just don't expect to reach your destination in a timely manner).
"The EZ-GO was probably the slowest vehicle in the hall at Geneva this year, but it may be one of the most inspired. Renault says its futuristic people mover may be available by 2022 for use by private companies or public transportation services," said Steve Hanley from Clean Technica.
For robust mobility, the entrance of the car is oversized in order to accommodate senior citizens and individuals with physical disabilities. This is an important feature of the EZ-GO, as autonomous mobility services are expected to serve the elderly, new parents doing errands with toddlers and more.
Renault also mentioned that the EZ-GO may appeal to tourists looking for innovative ways to explore cities. The concept vehicle is equipped with large windows and a clear roof for maximum visibility during rides.
The Geneva Auto Show is a popular event where concept vehicles are regularly showcased. With that in mind, the chances of seeing the EZ-GO, preserved in its concept form, in cities within the next few years is very low. Instead, the unit may serve as inspiration for developers and engineers in the ridesharing space.
Concept vehicles are also useful for gauging automotive trends. Previously, concept vehicles only consisted for private transportation units. But now, with ridesharing and car-sharing services on the rise, automakers are releasing concepts for shuttles and groups of passengers.
Comparing Renault's SYMBIOZ concept unit with the EZ-GO, it's obvious that the latter concept vehicle is heavily influenced by current transportation trends. The shared seating arrangement inside the EZ-GO is an interesting addition to the vehicle, which moves away from traditional, single rows, and introduces a bench configuration for social interaction during rides.
By comparison, the SYMBIOZ concept car, which was initially introduced at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2017, focused on connected technology for privately owned vehicles.
"Renault has shown other autonomous-drive concepts before, such as their SYMBIOZ concept from last year, but those were a little more on the ‘traditional car' side of things, and the EZ-GO is a significant departure from tradition, a much bolder concept," explained Jameson Dow from Electrek.
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