Volkswagen has joined the crowded car-sharing space with the debut of MOIA, its new platform featuring electric minivans.
Debuting at Tech Crunch's Disrupt Berlin event this week, Volkswagen's new MOIA claims a 186-mile range with a 30-minute, 80-percent recharge time using DC fast charging.
Seating capacity fits six in bucket seats equipped with WiFi, reading lights, and USB ports. Luggage is stored not in rear cargo holds, but beside the driver to save space.
"The car represents total comfort and is a crucial piece of our consistent service experience," said 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."
The next step is for Volkswagen to conduct pilot testing next year in Hamburg, Germany, where residents will have access to its dedicated app, where a series of algorithms will match passengers to minivans based on their selected destinations.
Initially, it will begin with 200 vehicles before expanding to 1,000 cars and new cities, using a concept where bus stops are spaced 200 to 250 meters apart.
If all tests prove successful, the service will continue its expansion in Europe before operating in the US by 2025.
"In a short time, we've laid the groundwork to add a new mobility component to the urban mix," said Ole Harms, MOIA CEO. "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."
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