Mobility on demand, carsharing, micromobility: these are just three answers to the question of how we will move in an environmentally friendly way in the narrowest of spaces in the future. What is already possible in 2020? Volkswagen Group is working with 12 cities worldwide to ensure that innovative ideas can be tested for their practicability. These include: Barcelona, Lisbon and Hamburg. The extension of the cooperation by a further three years proves how well the partnership with the Hanseatic city of Hamburg is performing. It began in 2016 – today the partners can look back on successful projects such as autonomous driving at the airport or the establishment of MOIA’s ride-sharing service. Hamburg even has a test track for automated and networked driving to offer.
“Volkswagen’s commitment helps us to reduce emissions, introduce new alternative mobility concepts and gain experience in shaping tomorrow’s mobility”
WeShare: 1.000 new e-Golf² und e-Up!¹ vehicles in Hamburg
In spring 2020, WeShare, the pure electric carsharing service with over 1,000 electric vehicles, will be launched in Hamburg. The infrastructure for electric mobility has now been increased to over 1,000 publicly accessible charging points. With this partnership, the city is pursuing a clear goal. Hamburg wants to become a model city for urban mobility of the future. And for this you need a strong partner. “Volkswagen’s commitment helps us to reduce emissions, introduce new alternative mobility concepts and gain experience in shaping tomorrow’s mobility,” explains Michael Westhagemann, Senator for Economics, Transport and Innovation. Volkswagen and Hamburg are jointly committed as future drivers in the use of intelligent transport systems (ITS).
The ITS World Congress will be held in Hamburg between October 11-15, 2021. Volkswagen Group will be a main partner of the largest specialist congress for intelligent transport systems. Together with Hamburg’s Mayor, Peter Tschentscher, Jürgen Rittersberger, Head of the General Secretariat and Group Strategy of Volkswagen AG, will chair the Host Committee.
“In the Volkswagen Data:Lab, we want to take the next step towards improving urban mobility ecosystems by developing new technologies. Close cooperation with local authorities is a key success factor here. Their early involvement enables us to develop a holistic view of how we can properly address the challenges facing cities and commuters,”
The intelligent bus fleet in Lisbon
In Portugal, too, Volkswagen Group is working together with the City of Lisbon and the CARRIS public transport network to test its own mobility solutions. “In the Volkswagen Data:Lab, we want to take the next step towards improving urban mobility ecosystems by developing new technologies. Close cooperation with local authorities is a key success factor here. Their early involvement enables us to develop a holistic view of how we can properly address the challenges facing cities and commuters,” says Nicole Magiera, Head of New Business at Mobility Data:Lab.
Volkswagen Group is working with the City of Lisbon to develop a better mobility ecosystem and promote alternative and more sustainable travel solutions. “The last project promoted an innovative high-tech real-time solution for dynamic routing on three express bus lines specifically designed for the WebSummit event and connecting specific public transport interfaces in central Lisbon to the venue,” explains Miguel Gaspar, Deputy Mayor of the City of Lisbon. A comprehensive data analysis was used to forecast where and when mobility is needed, to define appropriate stops in the city and to determine the frequency at which buses have to travel.
In order to greatly reduce the travel time of passengers even at peak times, a Quantum Computer Backend was developed which calculates the optimal routes in real time for the entire CARRIS bus fleet. “Compared to regular fixed routes, this saves many minutes and makes public transport faster and more attractive. The ideal case: Passengers no longer have a lot of hassle – the bus stop is close to their hotel, the bus arrives at the time they need it and the journey is fast because the algorithm detects traffic jams early and navigates the bus fleet around them. Gaspar: “These solutions enable us to utilize the immense potential of dynamic real-time routing and computing even for public transport.”
The company’s developers designed the system so that it could be used in any city of any size. It is even possible to offer the system to municipal transport companies or taxi companies. The Group is proud of this partnership. Eliane Moreno, project manager: “The Quantum Shuttle project in particular is a good example of how innovative mobility concepts have been tested in collaboration with the city and stakeholders. That’s why we’re working together to develop new mobility solutions that will improve the current and future generation of cities.”
The first all-electric e-scooter in Barcelona
Digital technologies are also at the heart of the partnership between SEAT and the city of Barcelona. At the Smart City Expo World Congress, SEAT presented its new business unit, SEAT Urban Mobility, the new electric e-scooter3 and the result of a collaboration with the Spanish Directorate General for Transport (DGT): the new DGT 3.0 initiative. This pilot project, which enables cars to communicate in real time with the city’s traffic lights, is an example of the possibilities that a networked car can offer. It is designed to improve safety and traffic flow. “We want to become an ally for today’s cities by redesigning urban mobility and offering mobility solutions. To achieve this, working with cities is crucial,” says Lucas Casasnovas, Head of Urban Mobility at SEAT. In the future, the new SEAT E-Scooter3 and the next generation of the SEAT e-Kickscooter4 – all-electric and compact – will also travel the streets of Barcelona. For the new E-Scooter3, SEAT is working on a cooperation agreement with scooter manufacturer Silence.
“City partnerships are very important to us. They enable us to create a framework in which we can actively develop and implement the solutions of the future. With these solutions, we want to help shape the transition to more sustainable urban mobility.”
The aim of city partnerships is precisely this: to establish contacts and enter into cooperation in order to jointly find solutions for mobility in metropolises. Maik Stephan, Head of Corporate Strategy Business Portfolio Management & Transformation: “City partnerships are very important to us. They enable us to create a framework in which we can actively develop and implement the solutions of the future. With these solutions, we want to help shape the transition to more sustainable urban mobility.“ More than 50 percent of the world’s population already live in cities – by 2050, the figure is expected to rise to almost 70 percent. Volkswagen Group’s partnerships with Hamburg, Lisbon and Barcelona are just three examples that illustrate how successful city partnerships can be for the Group, the cities themselves – but above all for the people who live there and want to travel efficiently and sustainably.
1 e-Up!: Fuel consumption combined: 12.9-12.7 kWh/100 km (electricity), CO₂ emissions combined: 0 g/km, efficiency class: A+
2 e-Golf: Fuel consumption combined: 13.8-12.9 kWh/100 km (electricity), CO₂ emissions combined: 0 g/km, efficiency class: A+
3, 4 e-Scooter concept: These vehicles are not yet offered for sale