It’s like a wet dream for any driver. While all the others “enjoy” the stop and go rush hour traffic you’re changing into air-mode, pull ahead and cock a snook at the earthbound drivers. Let’s talk about the new and very extraordinary car “Pop.Up”. Airbus and the Italian service provider ItalDesign introduced Pop.Up at the Geneva International Motorshow. It was described as the “third dimension” in transport. I myself am strongly reminded of the movie “Transformers” because if necessary Pop.Up is able to transform itself.
May I introduce: Pop.Up, the taxicab of the future
The multi-modal transport concept is all about a capsule which is able to use different kinds of shifting. On the one hand Pop.Up qualifies itself to be used on the ground, but on the other hand, it is also capable of flying and running on rails.
Currently, the conceptional capsule offers space for two people and is able to carry its passengers just like a computer-controlled taxicab from A to B. On the ground it’s moving electrically where it can drive 130km (~80 miles) with one charge. If necessary it can change into air mode. By call, a drone will come by and is docking at the capsule. Pop.Up is able to cover a distance of around 100km (~62 miles) when in air. Additionally, there is the possibility to integrate the capsule into a public transport system or into a hyperloop.
Pop.Up is the new mobility concept. It is multi-modal; it combines ground with the air. It allows passengers, a seamless and faster way to getting from A to B by using the cities sky. Pop.Up is a partnership between the airspace and the automotive sector. Two powerful sectors that comes together to develop a new technology, new concepts – for the future of smart cities. — Mathias Thompsen – General Manager, Airbus Urban Air Mobility.
Furthermore, Airbus and ItalDesign plan to add an artificial intelligence to Pop.Up. This would enable the car to drive selected routes completely autonomously. What looks quite futuristic could become reality faster than you’d think. However, no one mentioned yet when this project will go into the next phase(s). Right now it’s a concept – nothing more. But one can definitely look forward to the near future.