Renault unveils its electric EZ-GO ride-sharing concept vehicle

2018 Geneva Motor Show Renault EZ-GO concept & Talisman S Edition image

The company believes future auto ownership will be replaced by these self-driving vehicles which can be booked or hailed via smartphone app.

Renault's EZ-GO is less concept auto than a full transportation service concept design.

Top speed is limited to 50km/h, the wide front opening is safe and away from the road for passengers when getting in and out, and a light signature that shows everybody around that it's in autonomous mode.

Renault launched its futuristic auto at a press preview, held as part of the Geneva International Motor Show taking place in Switzerland between March 8 and 18.

The French brand sees the Ez-Go as the answer to the world's future mobility issues when in 2050 it claims that up to 70 per cent of the world's population is expected to live in urban environments.

Renault believes on-demand, shared vehicles will complement privately0owned cars and the EZ-GO aims to bridge these differing transportation needs.

Renault's vision for the future promises mobility for all. Given that the Renault Nissan Mitsubishi Alliance is already testing a self-driving ride-share service in Japan, that goal may not be as ambitious as it sounds.

The EZ-GO features an electric powertrain that supplies power to the rear wheels, although the urban-oriented EZ-GO has a maximum speed of just 30 miles per hour. "We could have different sizes and different designs for each city", said van den Acker.

EZ-GO is (5.2 m) long, (2.2 m) wide and is (1.6 m) tall.

Charging is in the form of a wireless induction battery charging system.

It has a numeric display on the front and back, a bit like on a bus.

Renault has a clear vision for the future of transportation: autonomous, electric and shared cars, integrated into the surrounding environment. Instead, it has a simple U-shaped seating arrangement that places its passengers face to face. A host of sensors (radars, lidars, ultrasound, and cameras) are grouped in the removable antenna located on the roof's rear spoiler, which is automatically deployed when the vehicle starts. They also provide cultural and tourist information about the area.

Complete with Wi-Fi connectivity and smartphone charging devices, the interior also includes a screen set into the front of the door, which displays information about the journey. There is also a ramp for wheelchair and pram users.

EZ-GO has Level 4 autonomous driving capability, meaning it's able to change lanes, turn at an intersection, and manage its distance from the vehicle in front of it.

It can also move into a safe position in cases of exceptional incidents in its vicinity, either by itself or through its connectivity with a monitoring centre - a technology now being developed under the Renault Alliance's umbrella.

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