Bosch’s Autonomous Electric Shuttle Concept Aims To Be The Future Of Travel

The current crop of autonomous shuttles isn’t very exciting, but Bosch is looking to shake things up by introducing a futuristic concept at CES.

Simply dubbed the concept shuttle, the model features a stylish exterior with an “outer shell made of display screens and glass.” The teaser images only show two small displays, but the concept has soft curves and slender LED headlights. This gives the concept a ‘friendlier’ appearance than traditional shuttles which can best be described as boxes on wheels.

The unique styling continues in the cabin as Bosch went for a light, airy and minimalist design. The shuttle has four individual seats and two of them have an infotainment screen and a leg rest. Bosch also says the shuttle has Wi-Fi and the ability to make recommendations and advanced bookings to nearby events.

One of the interior’s more interesting features is a high-tech camera system that checks to make sure passengers didn’t leave anything behind. If someone were to forget their purse or bag, the shuttle would alert them via their smartphone.

The cameras can also be used to detect gum on the seats or an overturned coffee cup. This will alert operators that the vehicle needs to be cleaned and the shuttle will then make the necessary arrangements.

The shuttle follows an on-demand model and will travel to users who make a request via their smartphone. An algorithm will identify the nearest shuttle and also look for other users looking to travel a similar route. Bosch says this helps to eliminate traffic while also reducing fares for everyone taking the shuttle.

The company was tight-lipped on technical specifications, but confirmed the shuttle has an electric powertrain and a smart battery monitoring system.  The latter monitors the status of the battery, how much energy is being used by the climate control system and environmental data such as traffic congestion and weather forecasts. Bosch says this allows the vehicle to accurately predict its range and this allows the shuttle to maximize the number of trips it can take before needing to be recharged.

Speaking of maintenance, the shuttle has predictive diagnostics and an assortment of sensors which monitor key components. This enables the shuttle to identify problems before they occur.

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