The urban conurbations are reaching their limits. Driving in the city often means traffic jams, searching for a parking space, frustration. On the other hand, buses and trains rarely travel when you need them and do not always take you exactly to your destination. It is therefore high time to think about new solutions that combine mobility with flexibility.
Challenge: Reducing traffic without restricting mobility
A real alternative to using one’s private automobile needs to be almost as flexible as a car and would have to offer almost the same level of comfort.
Solution: Between taxi and public transportation
MOIA is a company of the Volkswagen Group, which has started to develop a completely new concept that noticeably reduces individual traffic in conurbations without significantly restricting people’s mobility.
The basis for this is a novel vehicle concept. It is a shuttle-on-demand service with electric vehicles that offers everything that contributes to a comfortable ride: Comfortable seats, lots of space legroom, increased privacy.
A key idea behind the concept is pooling. The MOIA bus can accommodate up to 6 people. Passengers with similar destinations share one vehicle. But it is also about flexibility and availability. A mobile app recognizes the location of the passenger and automatically points the way to the next stop – which is never more than 250 meters away. Just as the destination is never further than 250 meters from the nearest station. Fixed routes do not exist and there is no need to change buses.
The technology behind MOIA is a complex software solution that records every driving job and automatically forwards it to the vehicle fleet in such a way that the vehicles are optimally utilized while passengers do not have to wait and get to their destination as quickly as possible. The software is backed by a team of developers in Hamburg and Helsinki. In the beginning of 2019, MOIA will start operation in the Hamburg metropolitan area.
Hamburg is already the most modern German city in the field of digital mobility. This is the conclusion of a study by the auditing and management consultancy PricewaterhouseCoopers, which was scientifically supported by the Institute for Transport Research at the German Aerospace Center (DLR). (May 2017)
Potential: Start of a new age of mobility
The aim of MOIA is to ultimately offer the mobility concept wherever possible in all metropolitan areas. A first test run has already been running in Hanover since October 2017, with real-time operation starting in summer 2018. However, there are still no electric vehicles used, as they will be characteristic of MOIA in the future. The actual big market launch with the MOIA electric vehicles is planned for the beginning of 2019. For this purpose, the metropolitan area of Hamburg was selected, in which, in a first step, 200 electrically powered MOIA vehicles will gradually be commissioned. Depending on demand development, this stock can be increased to up to 1,000 vehicles.
As of September 2019