A capsule on a skate: Citroën’s concept car turns everything upside down

This morning, Patrick and Colette – an octogenarian couple on vacation in Paris – planned to visit Versailles. Illico, the hotel concierge orders them… a skateboard. This is not a bad youth joke, nor a fancy fiction. At least, in the imagination of Citroën engineers. With its partners JC Decaux and the Accor group, the French manufacturer is today unveiling a new transport concept worthy of both Professor Tournesol, Spirou and Dr Spok: a platform with four wheels (or rather four spheres) , electric and autonomous which, like a container ship, accommodates capsules (called pods) that it will transport (at 25 km / h maximum) on demand.

Citroën skate

Until the gates of the castle for our tourist couple. The pod that will have transported them will be cozy and equipped with a minibar. But, depending on the needs, pods of other types are possible and considered. ” At night, for example, skateboarding could carry garbage cans »Explains Anne Laliron, head of future products at Citroën. Pod-trash cans, stretchers, hearses … or, a little less scary, mini-nurseries, yoga rooms, rest rooms, offices …

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An Accord pod on a Citroën skate

An Accord pod on a Citroën skate

No more nightmare, let’s come back to the real innovation of this vehicle: With skates on one side and pods on the other, the rolling part of the vehicle is separated from the passenger compartment. ” For this project, we did not start with a car, but with a robot »Specifies the engineer. The interest? ” maximize uses by pooling technology, this one being carried by the skateboard while the pod will re-enchant the course She continues.

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Re-enchantment or not, lanes dedicated to these rolling capsules must first be developed. Because, unless the road is transformed into a high-tech jungle where humans and uncoordinated robots will compete for the road, Citroën skates will not be able to use cycle paths or bus lanes, much less sidewalks. and the roadway. We do not know whether to complain about it.

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