AUDI, ITALDESIGN AND AIRBUS COMBINE SELF-DRIVING CAR AND PASSENGER DRONE
At the Geneva Autosalon, Audi, Italdesign and Airbus presented “Pop.Up Next”, an entirely electric, fully automatic concept for horizontal and vertical mobility. In the distant future this vehicle could transport people in cities quickly and conveniently on the road and in the air, at the same time solving traffic problems. The dominant interior feature is a 49-inch screen, while interaction between humans and the machine is performed by speech and face recognition, eye-tracking and a touch function.
The ultra-light, two-seater passenger cabin can be attached either to a car module or to a flight module. Audi is supporting the project with know-how on battery technology and automation.
“Creativity is needed where new mobility concepts for cities and people’s diverse needs are concerned. Italdesign is an incubator for innovative technologies and radical prototyping. Pop.Up Next is an ambitious vision that could permanently change our urban life in the future,” says Dr. Bernd Martens, Audi Board Member for Procurement and President of Italdesign.
Italdesign develops future-oriented vehicle concepts for Audi and customers around the globe. Jörg Astalosch, CEO of Italdesign, says: “Various players will define the rules of urban mobility in the future. We are proud to collaborate with Airbus, the leading company in the aerospace industry, to investigate solutions for future mobility.” Astalosch sees Pop.Up Next as a flexible on-demand concept that could open up mobility in the third dimension to people in cities. Italdesign is making use of a network of cities, universities and various stakeholders in order to better anticipate the future of mobility in cities. A first version of Pop.Up already had its premiere at the Geneva Autosalon a year ago.
AUDI SUPPORTS AIR-TAXI PROJECT IN INGOLSTADT
Audi is shaping mobility in the third dimension. A letter of intent was signed on this subject with partners from the fields of politics and industry in the Federal Chancellery in Berlin on Wednesday afternoon. Bram Schot, interim CEO and Member of the Board of Management for Sales and Marketing at AUDI AG, announced the start of the Urban Air Mobility project in Ingolstadt together with Federal Minister of Transport Andreas Scheuer, Minister of State for Digital Affairs Dorothee Bär, Airbus CTO Grazia Vittadini, Mayor of Ingolstadt Dr. Christian Lösel and other representatives of politics and business. The goal of the joint EU project is to be a model for air-taxi test operation in the Ingolstadt region.
“Connected, electric and autonomous cars will make urban traffic more comfortable and cleaner and will save space – that means better quality of life for people in cities. This is where mobility in the third dimension can make a valuable contribution in the future,” emphasized Schot. “We welcome the involvement of the city of Ingolstadt and support the development of the region as a test field for air taxis,” said Schot. At the Geneva Motor Show in March, Audi, the Audi subsidiary Italdesign and Airbus presented Pop.Up Next, an all-electric, fully automated concept for horizontal and vertical mobility.
“We would like to use our know-how to improve urban life, and aim to develop new mobility concepts for cities and people’s various needs with the Urban Air Mobility project,” said Schot. In the distant future, concepts such as Pop.Up Next are to transport people quickly and comfortably on the roads and in the air in large cities, thus solving traffic problems.
The Urban Air Mobility project is part of an EU initiative in the context of the marketplace for the European Innovation Partnership (EIP) on Smart Cities and Communities (SCC). The manifesto describes the first phase of the EU initiative, in which other European cities such as Hamburg and Geneva are participating.