These days, transport seems to be all about being small and green, but that doesn’t mean that performance and style need to be sacrificed. In fact, all of this year’s nominees pushed the technological and aesthetic boundaries to change the way we see eco-transport. So here is what you need to know about it: It will all be emission free and it will be great-looking.
Yuneec International have designed an electric aircraft that could mean we no longer have to worry about our carbon footprint every time we fly. The E430 not only saves energy, but it also saves money as it costs as little as £5 to charge it for three hours. Add to that its elegance and quiet vibrations as it takes off and lands and you could be looking at the future of short distance travel. EasyJet watch out.
The Mission 1 Electric Superbike not only has a sleek design and eco-friendly mechanism but its designer Yves Behar wanted to create something that would be embraced by motorcycle enthusiasts and that would fit into biker culture so he gave it a supersonic pitch and potency capable of competing with the best models currently in the market.
Similarly, the Honda EV-N Concept wanted to preserve the ‘retro feel’ of the 1967 Honda N360. Designed by 29-year old Kanna Sumiyoshi, the new version comes with solar cells in the roof and can seat up to four people even though it measures less than 3m by 1.5m. Also small in size but big in efficiency is the Land Glider by Nissan Co., which gives you the best of both worlds as it leans into corners as you turn just like a motorcycle would, but provides the comfort and safety of a car.
Building on the hype of urban cycling, Eduard Sentis has designed a model that will surely add to the increasing number of people switching to bicycles as their main form of transport. Sentis created the Urbike, a low-maintenance ride that includes anti-theft wheels, a unisex frame, and built-in lamps. The model was created to make bikes easier to use within cities and it is already in place in a few Catalan cities in Spain. If sweating on your daily commute is not for you, then the Gocycle by Karbon Kinetics is a more suitable option as it is the lightest electric bike ever built and provides that extra impulse for beating traffic and going uphill.
Finally, BMW has challenged the way cars are made by creating the first model made completely out of fabric. That’s right, high-tech fabric that changes its shape according to the driver’s needs. With hidden lights that are revealed by blinking apertures in the fabric and an engine that you can access by ‘unzipping’ the bonnet, the GINA Light Visionary Model looks more like a superhero ride than an everyday vehicle.