MOIA, the mobility startup from the Volkswagen Group, has introduced a ride pooling concept just one year after its inception.
The MOIA concept aims to provide new mobility options that will significantly reduce traffic in major cities and is being unveiled at TechCrunch in Berlin.
Ole Harms, MOIA CEO, said: “We want to create a solution for the typical transport problems that cities face, such as traffic, air and noise pollution, and lack of space, while simultaneously helping them reach their sustainability goals.
“In a short time, we’ve laid the groundwork to add a new mobility component to the urban mix. In 2018, we’ll be ready to launch our ride pooling concept internationally and take the first steps toward our goal of reducing the number of cars in major cities by one million in Europe and the USA by 2025.”
As a first project, the entire ecosystem including the newly designed car will launch in Hamburg at the end of 2018. “We’ll be able to offer the complete ride pooling value chain – as needed or just individual pieces,” continued Harms.
Various operator models will be possible and can be developed together with cities and partners, it said.
In addition to the car, the system consists of a customer app, which passengers use to book and pay for a MOIA. The app shows which cars are available and how much the ride will cost before a customer books a trip.
A pooling algorithm groups passengers with similar destinations together in order to increase the capacity for each car and to avoid detours. A driver app and comprehensive fleet management complete the system.
The MOIA car is a fully electric car that provides space for up to six passengers. The interior was designed to be spacious, with standalone seats, plenty of legroom, and enough space to move around and reach each seat with ease.
The car was developed and designed exclusively for ride pooling services. The seats are equipped with convenience features such as dimmable reading lights and USB ports. Each car also offers fast WiFi for passengers.
“The car represents total comfort and is a crucial piece of our consistent service experience,” said says Robert Henrich, MOIA COO. “We developed it using our co-creation process, which involved multiple rounds of potential users of various age groups testing cars and providing feedback.
“Many of the ideas from this process went directly into the development of the car. We’re also working on other future versions as well.”
Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles and Volkswagen Osnabrück planned, developed and built the MOIA car in 10 months. The car has a range of more than 300 kilometers (186 miles) according to WLTP-standard and can be charged up to 80% in about 30 minutes.
“Together with MOIA and VW Osnabrück, we are redefining car manufacturing;” said Eckhard Scholz from the Executive Board of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles. “We are very proud of the fact that we were able to build a new car specifically tailored to the needs of ride pooling in just 10 months.”
The car will make its debut on the streets of Hamburg next year. MOIA has been testing its service in Hannover since October 2017 and continuously developing its components in real time. The “MOIA co-creation process” is an integral part of this test, which consists of a fleet of 20 Volkswagen T6 Multivans.