UK Autodrive ‘pod’ design unveiled at AutoMechanika
Self-driving pod manufacturers RDM Group have unveiled the designs of their next generation of vehicles – including a four-seater, wheelchair-accessible version intended for use within the UK Autodrive trial.
The new range of vehicles was presented at the AutoMechanika event taking place at the NEC Birmingham, with large numbers of visitors stopping to take a look at the first full-scale prototype of the four-seater pod.
RDM said that the new pods would be available in two-, four- and eight-seat variations, and aimed at local city transport authorities, airports, shopping centres and theme parks looking for a first/last mile transport solution.
“All our pods will have a range of 60 miles and will be able to travel with a top speed of 15mph,” added David Keene, CEO of RDM Group. “We have also ensured that they have been designed to accommodate disabled people and have wheelchair access.”
The prototype on display at AutoMechanika was a windowless version – designed to showcase a futuristic interior concept including video screens that can play adverts, information videos or use the pod’s external camera’s to show the view from outside.
The version of the pod planned for use in UK Autodrive will have conventional glass windows, however, and RDM provided a mock-up image against a Milton Keynes background of how the pod is expected to look once the trial gets underway.
Up to 40 pods will be in use for the UK Autodrive trial, which is designed to demonstrate how the vehicles could offer and on-demand public transport system, initially operating around the main train station and central business district of Milton Keynes.