It seemed an apt time for a dedicated mobility event to take place, in a virtual setting of course! The rate of change the transport industry is undergoing has accelerated since COVID-19 hit. The way we approach the means of transportation is evolving in a way that hadn’t previously been forecast, nor could have. The insights shared this week at MOVE America very much reflected that, with industry leaders making evidence-based predictions on what this newly anticipated future may hold.
The ‘clean’ recovery
With between 80 and 90 million cars currently being produced each year, speakers noted that changes will be evolutionary rather than revolutionary, coming to market slowly but in an irreversible way. There are two paths the industry could take via a ‘clean’ or ‘dirty’ recovery post-pandemic.
It is certain that EV adoption will grow, with drivers becoming more environmentally conscious. However, COVID-19 has been detrimental to the car-sharing model and willingness to opt for public transport. Lynn Blake of PSA Group noted that drivers, for now, are leaning towards private car ownership as concerns grow over contamination of shared surfaces.
Most agreed that overall a ‘clean’ recovery is expected with mobility set to improve for drivers over the next decade through more varied and cleaner choices coming to market, and lower costs of ownership to be enjoyed.
How to future-proof cars
During one keynote address, a topic I am particularly interested in arose. How can automakers operate at the same pace as digital technology, whilst continuing to build robust cars with 10-year life expectancies? Speakers agreed that progress has been slow so far, with automotive OEM technology needing to be more integrated. A useful solution put forward for integrating the latest technologies at speed is via Over-The-Air (OTA) software updates.
An OTA update is a mechanism for making a software or configuration change to a connected vehicle Over-the-Air without taking it back to the garage. Again, no garage visits help minimise social contact in a post-COVID world.
At Cubic, we are experts in OTAs, having automated the process after discovering the value of this unique capability and identifying a gap in the market. This ensures seamless connectivity and future scalability for our customers’ vehicle fleets. To date, we have never left a vehicle behind, with 100% OTA success rate across 3.5 million Cubic-connected vehicles worldwide. Drivers enjoy the latest technologies, even if their connected car is several years old. Learn more about our OTA capabilities here.
Are electric vehicles the future?
Much discussion at MOVE focused on how 2020 could mark the turning point for EV adoption into the mainstream. Avinash Rugoobur, President at Arrival, stated that for this trend to truly take off the total cost of ownership of EVs must be better or comparable to diesel.
Arrival develops electric vehicles (buses, vans, taxis etc.) for commercial use, helping cities meet net-zero emissions targets. Experiencing rapid growth over the last 5 years, a workforce of 1,200, and major investments from Hyundai, Kia, and UPS, the company is now valued at $3 billion. Cubic announced a partnership late last year to deliver intelligent connectivity software to Arrival’s commercial EV fleet. Our PACE platform provides drivers with full visibility of nearby charging stations and real-time navigation.
The Arrival business model is unique, with a focus on making production, as well as its vehicles, fully renewable. By decentralising production and setting up low footprint, low CapEx microfactories worldwide, the EV-maker can deliver on its promise of lower total cost of ownership with highly customized EVs for local fleets.
Further contributing to the circular economy, Avinash spoke about how Arrival has developed a durable composite material, so if one of the fleet is damaged in an accident or comes to end of life the panels can be taken out, broken down to a raw material and recycled back into production. Genius! This eco-conscious approach reassures me that the ‘clean’ recovery stands a good chance.
The MOVE America mobility event concludes today, with talks on connected drones scheduled and a keynote on reimagining the world’s supply chains. Next in the series – MOVE Asia – takes place online from 8 – 10th September.
If you would like to learn more about Cubic’s connected EV software or OTA solutions, why not get in touch?