Extreme Transportation Innovation
“Mark my word, a combination airplane and motorcar is coming. You may smile, but it will come.” – Henry Ford, 1940
Compiled By Robin Jay
At the Future Transport Summit 2016 in Australia, Apple Co-founder Steve Wozniak said, “Human versus technology is something that I’ve thought about all my life… Because if the human is more important than the technology, you put the effort in to make the technology work in human ways. Make it understandable, make it intuitive. But if the technology is more important, you put every feature technology can do and force the human to change how they live their life.”
The transportation summit brought together thought leaders, IT specialists, innovators, entrepreneurs, futurists, transport leaders and academics. “Together, we can revolutionize the way we approach the transport challenge as we kick off a transformative 12-month program to identify how we can bring technology into the centre of what we do,” said Andrew Constance, Minister for Transport and Infrastructure of the New South Wales government. Later in 2016, Constance said the organization will release a detailed Future Transport Technology Roadmap.
In the meantime, Opulence did some research of our own on futuristic transportation.
It seems concepts once thought of as nonsensical science fiction have now reached an actual drawing board.
Autonomous Driving with the Mercedes-Benz F 015
A Luxury in Motion self-driving research car, the Mercedes-Benz F 015 is an innovative perspective into the future of mobility – anticipated for consumer street driving in 2030.
“The car is growing beyond its role as a mere means of transport and will ultimately become a mobile living space,” emphasized Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars.
With a spacious lounge character inside, the F 015 research vehicle will offer a continuous exchange of information between vehicle, passengers and the outside world. Six displays will make the interior a digital living space – a perfect symbiosis of the virtual and the real world. www.mercedes-benz.com
The AeroMobil manufacturer reports this flying car transforms in seconds from an automobile to an airplane. As a car, it’s said to fit into any standard parking space, uses regular gasoline, and can be driven in road traffic just like any other car. As a plane it can use any airport in the world, but can also take off and land using a grass strip or paved surface just a few hundred meters long. Makers say they’ve finalized the current prototype AeroMobil 3.0 and have flight tested it in real flight conditions since October 2014. www.aeromobil.com
A revolutionary spokeless smart cycle, the Cyclotron Bike is the world’s first hubless bike with an electronic gear box and ultra lightweight space-grade carbon fiber composite frame. It is packed with sensors and powered with an iPhone or Android App. An automatic, self-charging light sensor switches lights on/off according to the current daylight. The Cyclo-App signals when the battery is low, and when sensors encounter signs of an emergency or accident, it autonomously sends an emergency notification to send help. One advantage of hubless wheels is the usable space where you can add different Utility Slot Modules – such as a basket to carry groceries. The Cyclotron is expected ready for shipping in July 2017. www.indiegogo.com
EHANG 184 Autonomous Aerial Vehicle
At the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show,
Chinese firm Ehang unveiled a prototype video of the 184 AAV, said to be the safest, smartest and eco-friendly low altitude autonomous aerial vehicle providing medium-to-short distance communication and transportation solutions. No word on when the autonomous aerial vehicle will be ready for market. www.ehang.com
Modobag: World’s First Rideable, Motorized Smart Luggage
Modobag gets riders to their destination up to 3x faster than walking and features top speeds of 8mph, a dual wheel braking system, quick release foot pedals, extendable towing handle and high performance steering column. The touch control dashboard has LED backlighting and dual USB charging ports for cellphones and portable electronic devices. www.modobag.com
Never has the future of transportation offered more futuristic solutions. Stay tuned to upcoming issues of Opulence as innovators unveil even more transportation innovations.