The latest attempt at autonomous ride-sharing vehicle was shown off Tuesday at the Geneva Motor Show. Renault’s electric EZ-GO concept car is an ambitious attempt to enter the space, featuring all sorts of cool features and design quirks.
Off the bat, the car looks like almost every other “futuristic” concept car, as if it came out of iRobot. Renault states that the design is meant to maximize the sensors’ field of view. In further optimization efforts, the interior is completely open with U-shaped seating fit for up to six people, for a social ride-share experience.
Furthermore, the cocoon-like design allows for wide windows to be placed along the sides with a glass top, allowing an unobstructed view for passengers. Entering and exiting the car requires use of the front-facing ramp, which lowers flush with the flat floor, making it easily accessible for just about anyone while also keeping away from the flow of traffic.
The idea is for the car to be hailed with an app, or passengers can access them at stations placed around the city. “We designed Renault EZ-GO to be an iconic symbol for cities,” states Senior Vice President of Design, Laurens van den Acker. “This electric, autonomous concept explores the positive potential impact of shared mobility for all.” With the EZ-GO’s level 4 autonomous driving capability, the car can transport passengers safely with sensors to keep a safe distance behind cars, the ability to change lanes and make turns at junctions, and even navigate its way away from nearby accidents. All this with a speed limit of 50mph, putting passenger safety first and foremost.
Renault is looking to make the service available to businesses and cities, with a price point aimed higher than buses but less than an Uber or Lyft. No doubt it would be great if they could pull it off, and the company hopes to do just that by 2022.