The i3 connection, peak car GB, smart parking, eRoaming and more…

December 3, 2012 § Leave a comment

bmwi3The newest iteration of the BMW i3 – seen as the i3 Concept Coupe at the LA Auto Show last week – showcases BMW’s latest ConnectedDrive tech. The eDrive system calculates range before start-up and gives continual updates as to remaining battery juice, integrating info from the sat nav including traffic conditions and route topography, plus driving style, energy consumption from auxiliary functions, and selected driving mode. Mobility planning information is available on the eRemote smartphone app (iOS, Android), as well as access to the car’s data (such as state of charge), journey planning, remote charging control, location of charging points, parking spaces and onward travel planning, ie on foot or by local public transport. It’s also linked in to the DriveNow car-share (Germany, San Francisco) and ParkNow space-booking services. More here.

  • The BBC’s reporting on the possibility of ‘peak car’ in the UK: young men, in particular, are driving a lot less. Research is from the Centre for Transport Studies, Imperial College; CTS cites the rising cost of insurance, a fall in company car driving, young people’s “changing lifestyles and living arrangements”, “shrinking gender gaps across a range of mobility indicators”, “interaction between telecommunications and travel”, plus growing differences between transport use in London (less driving) and elsewhere in GB (more, particularly in rural areas). Full report hosted by the RAC Foundation. Interpretation by the Telegraph: motoring is becoming an increasingly female-dominated activity. More nuanced analysis from the Campaign for Better Transport
  • Reserve a parking space in London and recharge your EV: Parkatmyhouse.com has started a partnership with Source London and Chargemaster enabling homeowners to rent an EV charger to city visitors. Chargemaster is giving out free charging points for installation on private driveways and 200 are expected to be installed. Ten are already up and running.
  • And Hubject GmbH  – a JV including BMW, Bosch, Daimler and Siemens – is working on an EV-charging infrastructure connection solution using QR codes; its eRoaming platform will allow EV drivers to access all Europe-wide public chargepoints from a single contract, and can be tailored to suit car-sharing organisations, infrastructure operators and power suppliers. RFID cards, smart-charging cables and other communications tech may also be used, reports Hybridcars.
  • Also from Hybridcars: the University of Southern California is working with Mitsubishi on a two year ‘Living Laboratory’ smart-grid demo project to simulate EV use in a city of 50,000-60,000 people. More here.
  • Over a third of British motorists reckon that autonomous vehicle tech will reduce accidents, reports a survey by Bosch.
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