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Budget Airline Car Design Concept Serves as Efficient Alternative to Short-Haul Flights

Here’s an interesting creative exercise. What if instead of booking a seat on a short-haul flight somewhere, you’d book one in a so-called Airline Car, operated by the same airline that could have otherwise flown you to your destination.
Budget Airline Car Concept by CDR 27 photos
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The idea behind this concept is to lower travel emissions, and with electric vehicles continuing to become more efficient, UK-based agency CDR (Car Design Research) figures that you could eventually make 50 short-haul journeys with an EV for the same “environmental burden” as one aircraft journey.

In other words, the Budget Airline Car would produce only 2% of the emissions per passenger compared to a short-haul flight.

The vehicle was designed with enough space for six adults, plus their cabin baggage, and would feature an electric powertrain developed for long-distance cruising (city to city), as opposed to high performance. The core concept was developed by CDR together with associates Yichen Shu in China and Aditya Jangid in India, both of which designed subtly different exterior visual themes.

Size-wise, the concept is about as large as a Tesla Model X or a Volvo XC90, but with a considerably lower drag coefficient. At first, it wouldn’t be fully autonomous, with passengers having to share driving responsibilities, aided by a suite of advanced driver assistance systems. Down the road, the vehicle could do all the drive by itself, but not before the actual technology exists and is implemented.

The question now is, would you purchase a seat on such a vehicle as opposed to hopping on a flight? Realistically speaking, it depends on where you live, because in some countries where the traffic infrastructure isn’t as advanced, it can take you up to 4-5 hours (if not more) in order to cover the same distance you would in less than one hour with an airplane.

However, if, for example, you’re just trying to get from New York to Philadelphia, then an autonomous or even semi-autonomous shuttle could start to make sense.

press release
 
 
 
 
 

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