The Wintonomous is a driverless electric vehicle designed for small towns across North America and European countries. This 4WD vehicle would be able to ride on existing roads any season of the year. It would be heated by propane tanks to save batteries and could be sold to individual operators to transport passengers or deliver parcels.
If you live in a small city where there is no public transit systems or infrastructure, you are probably wondering if you’ll be able to experience future modes of electric and autonomous transportation anytime soon… I was born in a small town and I wish we had a vehicle back then, which could take me outside to see my friends living on rural roads, especially in winter during snow and cold temperature (besides a snowmobile that is). The Wintonomous could be designed with that purpose in mind.
How it works
The Wintonomous looks like a small bus equipped with panoramic windows. It would be able to accommodate 6 people and could accept wheelchairs or even be used as a mobile office. It would ride on existing roads 24/7 as a private or shared public transit vehicle.
In northern cities, it would be sold with 4WD wheel motors and all-wheel steering. It would draw its power from lithium-air batteries and would use propane tanks to heat the cockpit in winter or cool it during the summer.
The Wintonomous would be able to pick you up wherever you are like a taxi and would be sold as a private or shared transit vehicle (PSTV), meaning that you could buy one, design the interior to your liking and share it privately with friends or the community while generating a return on your investment.
The Wintonomous family of vehicles would be simple and efficient mechanically. Some version would be offered as a commercial delivery unit. The exterior could adapt itself automatically based on the product being delivered (One delivery truck for many brands).
We need to develop new categories of vehicles adapted to the reality of small towns, not just huge metropolis. We need to find ways to finance and operate these personal and commercial vehicles without placing an extra burden on municipal budgets. I think this could be achieved by integrating existing autonomous and payment technologies available in the market today and combining them with proven vehicle platforms.
The Wintonomous concept was designed by Jorge Ciprian, an Argentine industrial designer. Jorge has a degree in design from the University of Buenos Aires, and he’s currently working as a freelance designer. He also designed the Planetair and Xubikoo concept for Imaginative.