Car sharing services help cut down on too much traffic on the road, create less of a carbon footprint and offer those living in urban areas an option for when they need a vehicle but don’t otherwise want to own one. Some of the vehicles offered in these services are gas guzzlers and put out emissions, but we are starting to see hybrids and electric vehicles pop up as options. Designer Bharani Catna envisions what an ideal electric vehicle might be like for such a service in his Design for Urban Drive Cycle concept.
Catna’s idea is a research and design project focused on building an electric vehicle for “car clubs” in the United Kingdom. It deals with what is said to be “driving patterns, car clubs, and packaging in ultra small vehicles” while seeking “a solution through integrated system approach i.e. introducing cars as a subsystem of the total transportation system.”
The vehicle at the center of this concept would be designed for urban commuting based upon occupancy rate and average miles per day. It would be a fully electric offering, being able to travel about 100 miles per charge. Those who belonged to the car club would be able to book it 20 minutes in advance, using a “smart card” to access the car. When a driver is done with the vehicle, they would park it in a special parking spot equipped with “wireless induction charging capable of charging up to 80% in 30 minutes.”
Though the vehicle would be small, it would sport what’s described as a “distinctive A-pillar” to create the illusion of more room on the interior. It would be a very minimal design, seating what looks to be two people plus a small amount of cargo. It would have a mostly no frills interior, though it looks to be equipped with a display screen with at least GPS included as well as a digital read out behind the steering wheel showing speed as well as what looks to be EV specific information like how much charge is left.
This concept showcases what could be possible with car sharing services making use of electric vehicles. Examples of where these types of vehicles are already in play include services in California, Oregon, Quebec and Paris.