As society changes the car industry follows suit and, where possible, offers something to the world that turns how we interact with not only our daily driver, but the idea of travel, entirely on its head.
Now we love a combustion engine and being connected to the drive, that is why we have some of the best driving cars on the planet in our fleet but there is no doubt the world of car travel is changing and it is important to keep up with what is happening.
That is what Volvo are striving to do with their latest announcement. The manufacturer that gifted the seatbelt to the world, are synonymous with safety and can boast that not one fatality has ever been recorded in their SUV (the XC90) in 16 years are once again shaking up the industry.
The 360c is Volvos vision of what autonomous travel could and should look like. With absolutely no driver the 360c challenges the current concept of travel, city planning, infrastructure and how human beings impact the environment around us.
As a completely driverless vehicle, Volvo say the 360c can offer a range of services and uses to people who choose to travel within it’s beautifully crafted body. By removing the traditional combustion engine, rows of seats and the steering wheel, it allows the space to be used in a plethora of ways previously unimaginable. Essentially Volvo have delivered the possibility of having a travelling office, entertainment space and even sleeping area all on four wheels. Passengers can get on with whatever they like in comfort and safety while the car drifts along taking care of getting you from A to B.
Volvo wouldn’t be Volvo without chucking in a huge amount of safety and they say that the 360c will set the standard on how the future world of autonomous vehicles will safely communicate with each other and whatever else is sharing the road.
It all sounds very interesting and opens the doors to changing how we interpret travel, with short haul flights firmly in the sights of Håkan Samuelsson, President and CEO of Volvo Cars “The business will change in the coming years, and Volvo should lead that change of our industry. Autonomous drive will allow us to take the next big step in safety, but also open up exciting new business models and allow consumers to spend time in the car doing what they want to do.”
With 740 million people in the US alone making short haul flights, Volvo think these travellers are a prime segment of the market who would benefit from the kind of service the 360c offers and they may well be on to something.
It was only a matter of time before Volvo entered the world of autonomous travel and time will tell just how much of an impact the 360c conversation will have on the industry as a whole but it is a very strong start.
What would you rather? Travel to the airport and go through the process of jumping on a plane to travel 3-400km or jump into the Volvo and zip there on a cloud of Swedish safety and comfort?
Of course…you could just stick to being in control and choose a good old Porsche 911…what do you think?