Renault Unveil Driverless Uber-Like Electric Car Concept
With the Geneva Motor Show in full swing, this time of year always throws up some interesting auto concepts. And one of the most eye-catching is Renault’s Ez-Go, an autonomous, electric concept vehicle that would provide urban dwellers with an alternative to public transport. And Uber.
Able to accommodate up to six passengers, the Renault Ez-Go concept functions both as a car and an Uber-style ride-sharing service, with the vehicle designed to be used for riding alone or shared with other taxi-needing Joes who would be able to request the vehicle via a smartphone app.
Though no technically specifics were announced, according to Renault, the driverless Ez-Go features sensors that enable it to manage its distance from the vehicle in front, stay in lane, change lanes, and turn at a junction entirely autonomously. But just to keep things on the safe side, it also has a maximum speed of 30mph.
As well as booking the Ez-Go through an app, Renault also plan to install physical stations into cities. The tree-like station will include a screen that passengers can use to book their journeys, as well as provide cultural and tourist information about the area.
Design-wise, the concept vehicle features a lifting door that forms the front panel and ceiling of the car. Opening upwards, it reveals a living room-like interior, which is arranged in a U-shape. With no driver’s seat, and underfloor batteries instead of an engine, there’s plenty of cabin space.
A glass roof provides the interior with plenty of sunlight and it comes with Wi-Fi and smartphone charging devices, as well as a screen set into the front of the door which displays information about your journey. Outside, the car displays messages to tell pedestrians when they can cross the road and emits sounds to signal its presence to cyclists.
The Ez-Go concept is part of Renault’s ultimate aim to launch an electric ride-hailing service by the end of 2023, with the French manufacturer suggesting Ez-Go is just one of a whole range of concept cars to be introduced in 2018. Meanwhile, Uber wants to take things one step further by introducing flying taxis in Los Angeles by 2020.