Daily Life

PriestmanGoode designs electric autonomous network transit vehicle for Dromos Technologies

18. September 2020

London-based design studio PriestmanGoode is working with autonomous network transit (ANT) company Dromos Technologies to develop an electric autonomous vehicle for high capacity urban transport

PriestmanGoode describes the design as ‘approachable minimalism

PriestmanGoode was selected to develop the visual design for the vehicles following an international competition. The judges were impressed by the way PriestmanGoode had developed a modular vehicle with the user experience at its heart and that allows maximum flexibility of use. Today, the two companies unveil the initial design vision for the new vehicles.

Lars Herold, CEO of Dromos Technologies says “We were impressed with PriestmanGoode’s design expertise and experience with high capacity transport vehicles. Their ability to understand both passenger and business needs means they’re the ideal partner to design a vehicle for our high capacity system, which re-imagines mass transit for the 21st century. Moreover, their wide range of skills from design, CX, material development and visualisation means we’re able to work more efficiently, with an integrated design approach.”

Paul Priestman, Designer and Chairman of PriestmanGoode says “We’re delighted to have won the competition to work with Dromos Technologies on the design of these new autonomous vehicles. We’ve been working in the transport sector for many years and have seen countless ideas developed in that time. This is really the first ANT that meets both convenience and capacity requirements. It’s the first system we’ve seen that offers true potential as a form of high-volume mass transit.”

Priestman adds: “This type of mass transit has become even more relevant now. Not only does it answer the first and last mile problem, which is one of the key issues we’re always trying to solve in public transport, but it’s also particularly suitable for a post-pandemic world where passengers are more concerned about hygiene and safety. It enables us to maintain high volumes of passengers, whilst enabling social distancing, as passengers would share vehicles only with their own travel party.”

Dromos provides a high capacity network of autonomous electric vehicles suitable for both passenger and urban freight, running on demand and on its own dedicated infrastructure. The closed-loop system provides a number of passenger, environmental and economic benefits including:

  • 24/7 on demand service
  • Nearby stops within up to 100m of any location, and direct into buildings
  • Non-stop service means shortest travel times between two points
  • CO2 neutral at point of use
  • Ultra-quiet
  • Lower construction and operating cost*
  • Lower space consumption*
  • Shorter construction times*

The competition brief from Dromos was to design a safe, reliable and affordable vehicle around principles of innovation, modularity, sustainability, convenience, maintainability and versatility.

Dan Window, Creative Director at PriestmanGoode says ‘We designed the vehicle around the user. We thought about what types of passengers would use the vehicle, what they would carry, what they would do, what accessibility requirements they might have… it’s been designed from the inside out. Every element has been considered to ensure that Dromos is flexible and suitable for a wide range of users.’

PriestmanGoode describes the design as ‘approachable minimalism’. There are no extraneous elements, every detail serves a specific purpose. The design was created to be easy and efficient to manufacture, as well as maintain, and to enable maximum passenger comfort.

Features include:

  • Multi-purpose vehicle platform designed for passenger and freight
  • Flexible interior options to accommodate various passenger needs, including luggage, bikes, sporting equipment as well as disabled access
  • Step-free access and extra wide doors allow easy access for prams, wheelchairs, bikes
  • Tinted and patterned glass with reflective coating that reduces solar heat absorption
  • Large skylight and maximised window space
  • Seats moulded from sustainable and easy to clean materials
  • Modular design optimised for easy manufacturing and maintenance

 

The colours, materials and finishes are being developed taking into account the latest material technology and increased passenger considerations around hygiene.

Maria Kafel-Bentkowska, Head of CMF at PriestmanGoode explains: “The last few months have changed priorities in terms of materials and finishes. Hygiene has really come to the fore, and we’ve been working with suppliers to work on finding ways we can satisfy stricter hygiene standards as well as keep sustainability at the forefront.

 

Images: PriestmanGoode

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