Imagine jumping on a shuttle at an airport, inside an amusement park, or even on an industrial site and having it take you from point A to point B without relying on a driver.
It almost sounds too good to be true, right?
But it might not be too much longer before this scenario becomes a reality. You could find it playing out at airports, amusement parks, and other places all around the world.
The EZ10 driverless shuttle from EasyMile is changing the way people get around in certain parts of Europe, North America, and the Middle East. And, it could force many shuttle bus manufacturers to rethink their whole approach to creating shuttles.
Take a closer look at the EZ10 driverless shuttle and all it has to offer below.
What Is EasyMile?
Before we begin talking about the EZ10 driverless shuttle, let’s take a minute to talk about EasyMile. It’s the company that created the shuttle in the first place.
Founded in 2014, EasyMile has its headquarters in France. The company has committed to creating autonomous vehicle technology and using it manufacture vehicles like the EZ10 driverless shuttle that can carry both passengers and goods.
As the company’s name would suggest, EasyMile is devoted to coming up with mobility solutions for those looking to travel “the last mile.” That is to say that they’re focused on creating shuttle buses and other autonomous vehicles that operate over short distances.
EasyMile currently employs more than 100 people who specialise in fields like robotics and computer vision.
What Is the EZ10 Driverless Shuttle?
Now that you know a little bit more about EasyMile let’s discuss what makes the EZ10 driverless shuttle so unique. There’s a reason why it’s caught the attention of more than a few shuttle bus manufacturers out there.
The EZ10 driverless shuttle is an electric vehicle that runs on a lithium-ion battery that will last for up to 14 hours. The battery can be recharged overnight in approximately 8 hours.
The shuttle is designed to carry up to 10 people at a time. It has six seats inside of it and can also accommodate four standing passengers. Additionally, it’s capable of providing transportation for at least one person in a wheelchair.
The EZ10 driverless shuttle moves autonomously thanks to all of the technology that EaysMile has crammed inside of it. It has a GPS tracking system, a collision detection system, a visual guidance system, and EasyMile’s patented SLAM technology.
These features work in unison to allow the EZ10 to travel from one point to another without the use of a human driver.
How Do EZ10 Driverless Shuttles Work?
Does the idea of climbing onto a shuttle bus that doesn’t have a driver scare you? Your fears should subside once you understand how the EZ10 driverless shuttle works.
The EZ10 driverless shuttle does not just take off once passengers climb aboard and go wherever it wants. Instead, it travels along a predetermined route to get people where they need to go safely.
On that route, there are a series of sensors that allow for the EZ10 to “read” the road. The shuttle has a pair of on-board cameras that communicate with these sensors to keep it moving forward towards its final destination.
The EZ10 also relies on a surveying method called LIDAR and an onboard computer to keep tabs on everything that’s going on around it.
So if, for example, a vehicle or pedestrian is in front of it, the EZ10 will be able to “see” that it’s there and adjust accordingly. It can move faster, slower, or even stop based entirely on what’s happening on its route.
Where Could They Potentially Be Used?
One of the very first EZ10 driverless shuttles was put into operation in the Netherlands in between a rail station and a university campus.
Since then, EasyMile has branched out and tried to show how valuable the EZ10 could be in a variety of different settings. EZ10 shuttles are currently being used in an office park in California, on a college campus in Taiwan, and on the open road in countries like Finland and England.
But the possibilities are endless when it comes to where the EZ10 could be working in the future. It could potentially find a home in places like resorts, amusement parks, health centres, commercial properties, and so much more.
Will They Change the Shuttle Bus Industry?
In the coming years, it won’t be surprising at all to see the EZ10 and other driverless shuttles showing up in more and more places.
When that happens, shuttle bus manufacturers aren’t going to be able to ignore the trend. It could very well shake up the entire shuttle bus industry. It will force manufacturers to go back to the drawing board to create driverless shuttles of their own.
Outside of the fact that driverless shuttles are convenient, they’re also proving to be good for the environment. They’re electric, which means they produce fewer emissions than ordinary shuttles do. It also means they could conceivably reduce the congestion that exists in many cities all around the world.
It remains to be seen how shuttle-bus manufacturers will react to the EZ10. But it’s safe to say that they will have to consider at least the possibility of producing driverless shuttles to compete with the one EasyMile has created.
Why Shuttle Bus Manufacturers Should Use the EZ10 for Inspiration
The most exciting part about the EZ10 driverless shuttle is that it’s still relatively new. It’s only been around for a few years and is still undergoing testing in many countries across the world.
That means it could end up being even more beneficial than we all think it could be.
Shuttle bus manufacturers should make sure they’re monitoring the successes and failures of the EZ10. It could help them create more successful driverless shuttle models as we move forward.
Check out our blog to learn more about the fantastic electric vehicles that are coming every day.