Yesterday, the largest car maker in the world, Volkswagen launched a new vehicle, not in India but in Europe. Branded as Moia, it most certainly is not the regular run-of-the-mill vehicle; if it takes off, it could prove to be revolutionary.
Moia is the first ride-hailing vehicle. Looks more like a mini van, it is a six-seater, electric vehicle with a 300 kms range. It has in built USB ports, reading lights and even Wi-Fi for each passenger.
A customer uses the app to hail the minivan and the programmed algorithms help optimize the ride-sharing by matching customers with similar destinations. The aim now of VW is to develop a broad portfolio of on-demand services that will improve people’s commutes and reduce urban congestion and pollution.
That’s a great ideal to make cars. How many of our Indian car makers even think like this? VW’s Moia is a great innovation; the vehicle is not the innovation but the idea behind it is. India is grappling with pollution and things will only get worse as more and more cars are crowding the street. Ride sharing might become the norm in the future and VW is showing the world the way. Hope Indian car makers too take this cue and get onto this bandwagon. Here, there would be very few who would willingly leave their car behind and do ride sharing. It might be used more by those who do not have a car! And yes, we might not restrict the number of people to the seats available; surley it will be filled to the brim! Yeah, some ideas are just not workable in India.