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do cars still belong in the city?

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do cars still belong in the city?

Fueled by climate concerns, cities are undergoing a transformation. And, quite frankly, cars don’t always seem to fit into the equation. This is primarily due to decarbonisation goals, which make internal combustion engines incompatible with European ambitions. Also, the surge in sustainable mobility options means there’s a need for a redistribution of traffic space among various modes of transportation. So, how can we find a new role for the car? The answer in three steps…

  • electric vehicle
  • shared mobility

★ ☆ ☆
scrapping the most polluting vehicles

The issue with cars primarily revolves around greenhouse gas emissions, which contribute to climate change, and the release of fine particles, which the World Health Organization associates with respiratory and cardiovascular diseases. So, it’s the type of engines that needs to be addressed rather than the vehicles themselves. Implementing ‘Zones à faible émission‘ (LEZ) in France, ‘Low Emission Zones’ in the UK, or ‘Zona a Traffico Limitato‘ (ZTL) in Italy has proven to be an effective regulatory response. By excluding the most polluting vehicles, city centers can breathe easier. In historic city centers where cars often struggle to navigate, multimodal solutions offer alternatives like biking, walking, or using small electric vehicles in place of cars. For instance, in 2007, banning cars from the city center of Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, led to a remarkable 70% reduction in carbon emissions1 and restored the pleasure of leisurely strolls through its charming streets. In this context, every initiative is worth exploring, and cities should remain open testbeds for experimenting with innovative mobility solutions.

★ ★ ☆
encouraging urban space sharing

Cars need to adapt to sharing the road with other modes of transportation like public transit and bicycles. As a result, cars are becoming more tailored to specific uses. The key is to foster harmonious sharing of space while keeping in mind the unique characteristics of each city. For example, a hilly city like Zurich can hardly be compared to Amsterdam. Implemented in countries like Switzerland, Belgium, France, Luxembourg, and Austria, the concept of a ‘zone de rencontre‘ (meeting zone) reconciles all modes of transport by sharing the road at a limited speed for vehicles. Other systems, like ‘zones 30‘, operate on the same principle of calm driving to promote coexistence among all urban space users. Another approach is the ‘vélorue‘ (bike street), which prioritises cyclists, and is particularly popular in countries such as Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, and Denmark. Lastly, space sharing can also be temporal, depending on the time of day (morning deliveries, public transit during rush hours, vehicles the rest of the time) or the season (cars in winter, pedestrians in summer). The key is to share equitably.

★ ★ ★
adapting cars to the new urban landscape

While cities aim to move away from a ‘car-centric’ approach, automobiles are also taking steps to adapt to urban life.

First and foremost, they are becoming more environmentally friendly. In this regard, the rapid electrification of the automotive fleet is leading the way. According to the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association2, electric vehicles accounted for 21.6% of registrations in the EU in 2022, compared to 10.5% in 2020.

They are also being shared more through car-sharing programs, for which an increasing number of cities are offering dedicated spaces.

Moreover, they offer greater flexibility. Short-term rental systems, allowing you to match the size and use of the vehicle to your immediate needs, promote more efficient resource utilisation.

Lastly, they are becoming increasingly connected. Analysing data transmitted by vehicles helps in monitoring traffic conditions, congestion zones, and parking spaces. This integration enables cars to navigate traffic with greater ease and serenity.

For all these reasons, automobiles have their place in the city, just like other modes of transportation. Both are undergoing profound transformations to ensure that no one is left by the wayside. Mobilize, a Renault Group brand, is actively engaged in this journey, offering a comprehensive ecosystem of solutions for achieving carbon-neutral mobility.

Ankinee Kirakozian explains how nudges can “effectively change individuals’ environmental preferences”

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Ankinee Kirakozian explains how nudges can “effectively change individuals’ environmental preferences”

Ankinee Kirakozian holds a Ph.D. in economics and is an associate researcher at BETA (Bureau d’Économie Théorique et Appliquée) [Bureau of theoretical and applied economics]. Her work bridges environmental economics and behavioural economics. Recently, she collaborated on the [Imp]²ulce project, a large-scale experiment conducted in partnership with Lucile Janssoone from Réseau Alliances and Noémie Rogeau from 2R Aventure. The project’s goal was to assess the impact of nudges on sustainable mobility. She shared her insights on the topic with Mobilize.

  • electric vehicle
  • energy transition

First of all, what is a nudge?

“A good nudge should preserve an individual’s freedom of choice and avoid using manipulative tactics.”

In a literal sense, the term “nudge” refers to a gentle push or a subtle prod.

In essence, a nudge is a tool designed to alter one’s perception of a situation. Based on this shift in perception, the individual is free to decide whether or not to change his or her behaviour. It entails modifying the choice framework presented to an individual in a given situation. By introducing new options for decision-making, a company, a public policymaker, or even an individual can encourage decisions that align with desirable outcomes. A good nudge should preserve an individual’s freedom of choice and avoid using manipulative tactics. A famous real-world example is the urban ashtray designed as a ballot box. Initially developed in England, it invited smokers to cast their vote for Messi or Ronaldo when disposing of their cigarette butts. This device captures individuals’ attention by reshaping their perception of the situation, motivating them to engage in environmentally friendly behaviour.

Regarding mobility, what types of nudges can be applied, and what psychological mechanisms do they rely on?

Nudges are built on the understanding that our decision-making isn’t always grounded in perfect rationality but is influenced by cognitive biases. Among the various behavioural biases, we’ve explored several in the [Imp]²ulce project. For instance, we examined the “loss aversion” bias. A nudge based on this bias involves highlighting the potential loss—whether it be financial, in terms of time, or related to health—that individuals might incur if they continue the same behaviour. In general, people tend to be more averse to the risk of losing something than to the prospect of gaining it. One study even found that the emotional pain of losing €1,000 is twice as strong as the joy of winning the same amount. Another significant psychological bias is the “moral appeal,” which reminds individuals that their behaviour contributes to addressing issues like climate change or public infrastructure. This nudge can be criticised as moralising. Then there’s the “social norm” bias, perhaps the most well-known nudge among the general public. It’s often used in matters of energy consumption or waste sorting. For instance, comparing a household’s energy consumption to the average consumption of their peers on an energy bill is a typical application of this nudge. In the context of mobility, this might involve rating the environmental impact of employees’ commuting choices or the usage distribution of different mobility options. We also experimented with the “presentation change” bias, which means presenting familiar information in a more playful manner through gamification.

Why are nudges important for mobility?

“Policymakers and businesses need to pay special attention to nudges that stimulate loss aversion”

Answering this question requires careful consideration. Not all nudges are effective; they are not all promising. In our study, we found that only moral appeals, loss aversion, and the combination of the two had a positive impact on behaviour change in transportation. Among these, loss aversion was the most powerful. This shows that policymakers and businesses need to pay special attention to nudges that stimulate loss aversion, especially if they want to promote alternative modes of transportation. We also found that exposure to “moral appeal” nudges must be long enough to maximize their effects and reach a broader audience. This runs counter to the practices commonly seen in communities today, where the majority of initiatives are relatively short-term experiments lasting only two, three, or four weeks. We also found that the impact of nudges persists over time, meaning we can effectively change individuals’ environmental preferences. This differs from measures like taxes, for example, which generate a price-related response but don’t have a lasting effect once the tax is removed. From this perspective, nudges show great promise. However, it’s important to exercise caution because, out of the six nudges we tested, three did not produce the desired effects in our experiment, including social comparison, which is commonly used for behaviours related to energy consumption, water usage, or waste recycling.

What are the limitations of nudges?

Unlike conventional financial instruments, we can’t say that a nudge is effective in all contexts. Such policies need to be localised and tested, and may not necessarily be replicable from one region to another. People have different cultures and may have different responses to the same biases. Given the low cost of nudges compared to subsidies or reward mechanisms, we achieve very interesting effects at a lower cost, but we can’t always scale them up. As an economist, I believe that nudging is a valuable complementary tool to traditional incentive policies, but it cannot replace them.

For Mobilize, the use of nudges is a promising avenue. They prove to be potent allies in steering behaviours towards carbon neutrality. When used correctly, they become powerful tools in combating solo car use and reducing reliance on fossil fuels. In situations where a car is unnecessary, they can encourage choices in favor of sustainable mobility or public transportation. In a broader sense, they help showcase a spectrum of mobility alternatives that Mobilize champions: options that are more sustainable, accessible, and affordable.

2040: What if driving were more affordable?

WHAT IF…

2040: What if driving were more affordable?

The prospect of a more affordable car seems counterintuitive. In 2022, fuel prices hit record highs, sparking protests in over 90 countries1. The prices of both new and used vehicles are also soaring. Regulators, in their efforts to reduce automotive emissions, are rolling out various measures, from urban or road tolls to environmental taxes and low-emission zones. These measures can all lead to increased usage costs, and cars already represent the third-largest2 expense for households in Europe. When you add rising parking fees and maintenance costs to the equation, it could result in cars becoming too expensive for a significant portion of the population, a luxury for a privileged few.

  • electric vehicle
  • shared mobility

Nevertheless, several signs suggest a more optimistic outlook. With a shift towards prioritising usage over ownership, the rise of new sharing models, and ongoing improvements in electric vehicle efficiency, there’s potential for the automobile to reinvent itself as a more cost-effective option..

indicator #1 – Insurance adapts to vehicle usage

The way we use cars is changing. It’s becoming less routine, more shared, and integrated into multi-modal systems, diverging from the traditional one-size-fits-all insurance policies. In this context, mileage-based insurance, known as ‘pay as you drive’ (PAYD), is ushering in a small revolution. It tailors insurance to actual vehicle usage. Additionally, ‘pay how you drive’ (PHYD) insurance is emerging, adjusting premiums based on driving behavior to reward cautious drivers.

In collaboration with Accenture, Mobilize Insurance embraces this approach and provides solutions tailored to the intricacies of today’s mobility landscape.

indicator #2 – Electric mobility goes mainstream

Today, electrification presents a two-sided coin for motorists’ wallets. Electric vehicles come with a significantly higher upfront cost (over 20%3 more in the United States), but electric charging is more economical than filling up with petrol, especially when you have access to it at home or at your workplace. According to France Stratégie4, the savings in operating costs amount to €1,200 per year for an electric car, making it profitable within six years, factoring in current incentives in France.

Meanwhile, manufacturers are investing heavily in innovation to reduce the production cost of electric vehicles. This is a key objective for Renault Group through its subsidiary, Ampère. By optimising software architecture integration, reducing parts diversity, and achieving a production time of under 10 hours per vehicle, the Group aims to slash the cost per vehicle by 40%!

mobilite-democratise

indicator #3: Car sharing and cost sharing

According to McKinsey, the European car-sharing market could be worth between 4 and 5 billion euros by 2030. Based on ADEME5 data, France currently has 12,000 active car-sharing vehicles and 300,000 regular users. Additionally, carpooling accounts for 4% of daily commutes. This trend offers numerous advantages: it promotes more efficient use of vehicles that often sit idle, reduces the automotive industry’s land footprint amid ‘Zero Net Artificialisation’6 goals, and substantially cuts emissions from the sector while trimming individual travel costs. Today, this is embodied in services like Zity by Mobilize or Mobilize Share, which simplify car sharing (among individuals or in businesses) and offer quick vehicle rentals.

micro-voitures

indicator #4 – The rise (finally) of microcars?

In the midst of the ongoing debate regarding vehicle size, a trend towards microcars might be on the horizon to cater to specific needs. While often seen as novelties (one can’t help but think of Paul Arzen’s famous “egg”), microcars could soon become a familiar sight in our urban environments. Electric, lightweight, eco-friendly, and purpose-built for city life, these minuscule automobiles also offer the advantage of affordability.

A survey7 conducted by McKinsey reveals that a majority of individuals interested in ‘minimobility’ have moderate to low incomes. In this context, the Mobilize Duo and Bento micro-vehicles, designed for passengers and small cargo transportation respectively, are poised to make a splash. Set to launch in 2024, they occupy just one-third of a parking space, have access to low emission zones (ZFE)8, are made with 50% recycled materials, and are available through subscription!

indicator #5 – More than just a car

Electric vehicles may soon transcend their traditional role as mere transportation. With the advancement of Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) technologies, they will serve as supplementary batteries for the grid. Behind the V2G acronym lies a promising technology. Through bidirectional charging, vehicles will recharge when electricity is inexpensive and demand is low. Conversely, during peak demand periods, cars can inject unused energy back into the grid, contributing to grid stability. This presents an opportunity to generate extra income by selling this surplus electricity to grid operators.

While we anticipate the launch of V2G on upcoming Renault E-Tech models, the Mobilize Smart Charge app already empowers you to manage your vehicle’s charging, starting it when electricity is cheapest and stopping it when prices rise!

are data the key to sustainable mobility?

WHAT IF…

2040: What if driving were more affordable?

The prospect of a more affordable car seems counterintuitive. In 2022, fuel prices hit record highs, sparking protests in over 90 countries1. The prices of both new and used vehicles are also soaring. Regulators, in their efforts to reduce automotive emissions, are rolling out various measures, from urban or road tolls to environmental taxes and low-emission zones. These measures can all lead to increased usage costs, and cars already represent the third-largest2 expense for households in Europe. When you add rising parking fees and maintenance costs to the equation, it could result in cars becoming too expensive for a significant portion of the population, a luxury for a privileged few.

  • electric vehicle
  • energy transition

Nevertheless, several signs suggest a more optimistic outlook. With a shift towards prioritising usage over ownership, the rise of new sharing models, and ongoing improvements in electric vehicle efficiency, there’s potential for the automobile to reinvent itself as a more cost-effective option..

indicator #1 – Insurance adapts to vehicle usage

The way we use cars is changing. It’s becoming less routine, more shared, and integrated into multi-modal systems, diverging from the traditional one-size-fits-all insurance policies. In this context, mileage-based insurance, known as ‘pay as you drive’ (PAYD), is ushering in a small revolution. It tailors insurance to actual vehicle usage. Additionally, ‘pay how you drive’ (PHYD) insurance is emerging, adjusting premiums based on driving behavior to reward cautious drivers.

In collaboration with Accenture, Mobilize Insurance embraces this approach and provides solutions tailored to the intricacies of today’s mobility landscape.

indicator #2 – Electric mobility goes mainstream

Today, electrification presents a two-sided coin for motorists’ wallets. Electric vehicles come with a significantly higher upfront cost (over 20%3 more in the United States), but electric charging is more economical than filling up with petrol, especially when you have access to it at home or at your workplace. According to France Stratégie4, the savings in operating costs amount to €1,200 per year for an electric car, making it profitable within six years, factoring in current incentives in France.

Meanwhile, manufacturers are investing heavily in innovation to reduce the production cost of electric vehicles. This is a key objective for Renault Group through its subsidiary, Ampère. By optimising software architecture integration, reducing parts diversity, and achieving a production time of under 10 hours per vehicle, the Group aims to slash the cost per vehicle by 40%!

route-alerte

indicator #3: Car sharing and cost sharing

According to McKinsey, the European car-sharing market could be worth between 4 and 5 billion euros by 2030. Based on ADEME5 data, France currently has 12,000 active car-sharing vehicles and 300,000 regular users. Additionally, carpooling accounts for 4% of daily commutes. This trend offers numerous advantages: it promotes more efficient use of vehicles that often sit idle, reduces the automotive industry’s land footprint amid ‘Zero Net Artificialisation’6 goals, and substantially cuts emissions from the sector while trimming individual travel costs. Today, this is embodied in services like Zity by Mobilize or Mobilize Share, which simplify car sharing (among individuals or in businesses) and offer quick vehicle rentals.

indicator #4 – The rise (finally) of microcars?

In the midst of the ongoing debate regarding vehicle size, a trend towards microcars might be on the horizon to cater to specific needs. While often seen as novelties (one can’t help but think of Paul Arzen’s famous “egg”), microcars could soon become a familiar sight in our urban environments. Electric, lightweight, eco-friendly, and purpose-built for city life, these minuscule automobiles also offer the advantage of affordability.

A survey7 conducted by McKinsey reveals that a majority of individuals interested in ‘minimobility’ have moderate to low incomes. In this context, the Mobilize Duo and Bento micro-vehicles, designed for passengers and small cargo transportation respectively, are poised to make a splash. Set to launch in 2024, they occupy just one-third of a parking space, have access to low emission zones (ZFE)8, are made with 50% recycled materials, and are available through subscription!

jumeau-numerique

indicator #5 – More than just a car

Electric vehicles may soon transcend their traditional role as mere transportation. With the advancement of Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) technologies, they will serve as supplementary batteries for the grid. Behind the V2G acronym lies a promising technology. Through bidirectional charging, vehicles will recharge when electricity is inexpensive and demand is low. Conversely, during peak demand periods, cars can inject unused energy back into the grid, contributing to grid stability. This presents an opportunity to generate extra income by selling this surplus electricity to grid operators.

While we anticipate the launch of V2G on upcoming Renault E-Tech models, the Mobilize Smart Charge app already empowers you to manage your vehicle’s charging, starting it when electricity is cheapest and stopping it when prices rise!

virtual universes for real-world repairs

One of the remarkable aspects of data is its versatility, allowing it to easily adapt to various forms. This adaptability has led to its close relationship with virtual worlds, a realm that the automotive industry couldn’t resist embracing. By combining individual vehicle data, 3D modeling, and remote assistance, virtual or augmented reality headsets become intriguing tools for a ‘hands-on’ approach to maintenance. This approach allows technicians to dive deep into the vehicle’s systems, identifying anomalies and potential issues, all while providing remote diagnostics. Even more impressively, drivers themselves could take direct action based on these remote recommendations. It translates to saved time, fewer trips, and, ultimately, cost savings.

towards an abundance of services

From driving tips to ‘self-service’ repairs and optimised maintenance schedules to personalised mobility offerings, innovations driven by data—or more precisely, its smart utilisation—are plentiful. Many, perhaps, are yet to be unveiled. Beyond providing the enhanced driving experiences and safety we’ve now come to expect, this data also opens up opportunities in the realms of prevention and maintenance. Digital data unveils what often eludes the naked eye within the intricate world of mobility: the countless interactions between a vehicle, its driver, and the road. As a result, it has the potential to become paramount in ensuring the overall performance of the ecosystem… while allowing drivers to relish the pure pleasure of being behind the wheel.

2030: What if the future of mobility was rural?

WHAT IF…

2040: What if driving were more affordable?

The prospect of a more affordable car seems counterintuitive. In 2022, fuel prices hit record highs, sparking protests in over 90 countries1. The prices of both new and used vehicles are also soaring. Regulators, in their efforts to reduce automotive emissions, are rolling out various measures, from urban or road tolls to environmental taxes and low-emission zones. These measures can all lead to increased usage costs, and cars already represent the third-largest2 expense for households in Europe. When you add rising parking fees and maintenance costs to the equation, it could result in cars becoming too expensive for a significant portion of the population, a luxury for a privileged few.

  • connectivity
  • transport on demand

Nevertheless, several signs suggest a more optimistic outlook. With a shift towards prioritising usage over ownership, the rise of new sharing models, and ongoing improvements in electric vehicle efficiency, there’s potential for the automobile to reinvent itself as a more cost-effective option..

indicator #1 – Insurance adapts to vehicle usage

The way we use cars is changing. It’s becoming less routine, more shared, and integrated into multi-modal systems, diverging from the traditional one-size-fits-all insurance policies. In this context, mileage-based insurance, known as ‘pay as you drive’ (PAYD), is ushering in a small revolution. It tailors insurance to actual vehicle usage. Additionally, ‘pay how you drive’ (PHYD) insurance is emerging, adjusting premiums based on driving behavior to reward cautious drivers.

In collaboration with Accenture, Mobilize Insurance embraces this approach and provides solutions tailored to the intricacies of today’s mobility landscape.

indicator #2 – Electric mobility goes mainstream

Today, electrification presents a two-sided coin for motorists’ wallets. Electric vehicles come with a significantly higher upfront cost (over 20%3 more in the United States), but electric charging is more economical than filling up with petrol, especially when you have access to it at home or at your workplace. According to France Stratégie4, the savings in operating costs amount to €1,200 per year for an electric car, making it profitable within six years, factoring in current incentives in France.

Meanwhile, manufacturers are investing heavily in innovation to reduce the production cost of electric vehicles. This is a key objective for Renault Group through its subsidiary, Ampère. By optimising software architecture integration, reducing parts diversity, and achieving a production time of under 10 hours per vehicle, the Group aims to slash the cost per vehicle by 40%!

1403011-sysyhbu59k-preview
 
“One observation is clear: the region’s stability can now only be imagined as part of a fundamental reflection about how people can get about.”
 

And the local economic and political actors have been able to act on this wisely. In a way, those who have come today to the inauguration of the corner shop are witnesses as much as actors of change.

indicator #3: Car sharing and cost sharing

According to McKinsey, the European car-sharing market could be worth between 4 and 5 billion euros by 2030. Based on ADEME5 data, France currently has 12,000 active car-sharing vehicles and 300,000 regular users. Additionally, carpooling accounts for 4% of daily commutes. This trend offers numerous advantages: it promotes more efficient use of vehicles that often sit idle, reduces the automotive industry’s land footprint amid ‘Zero Net Artificialisation’6 goals, and substantially cuts emissions from the sector while trimming individual travel costs. Today, this is embodied in services like Zity by Mobilize or Mobilize Share, which simplify car sharing (among individuals or in businesses) and offer quick vehicle rentals.

indicator #4 – The rise (finally) of microcars?

In the midst of the ongoing debate regarding vehicle size, a trend towards microcars might be on the horizon to cater to specific needs. While often seen as novelties (one can’t help but think of Paul Arzen’s famous “egg”), microcars could soon become a familiar sight in our urban environments. Electric, lightweight, eco-friendly, and purpose-built for city life, these minuscule automobiles also offer the advantage of affordability.

A survey7 conducted by McKinsey reveals that a majority of individuals interested in ‘minimobility’ have moderate to low incomes. In this context, the Mobilize Duo and Bento micro-vehicles, designed for passengers and small cargo transportation respectively, are poised to make a splash. Set to launch in 2024, they occupy just one-third of a parking space, have access to low emission zones (ZFE)8, are made with 50% recycled materials, and are available through subscription!

4310841

indicator #5 – More than just a car

Electric vehicles may soon transcend their traditional role as mere transportation. With the advancement of Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) technologies, they will serve as supplementary batteries for the grid. Behind the V2G acronym lies a promising technology. Through bidirectional charging, vehicles will recharge when electricity is inexpensive and demand is low. Conversely, during peak demand periods, cars can inject unused energy back into the grid, contributing to grid stability. This presents an opportunity to generate extra income by selling this surplus electricity to grid operators.

While we anticipate the launch of V2G on upcoming Renault E-Tech models, the Mobilize Smart Charge app already empowers you to manage your vehicle’s charging, starting it when electricity is cheapest and stopping it when prices rise!

virtual universes for real-world repairs

One of the remarkable aspects of data is its versatility, allowing it to easily adapt to various forms. This adaptability has led to its close relationship with virtual worlds, a realm that the automotive industry couldn’t resist embracing. By combining individual vehicle data, 3D modeling, and remote assistance, virtual or augmented reality headsets become intriguing tools for a ‘hands-on’ approach to maintenance. This approach allows technicians to dive deep into the vehicle’s systems, identifying anomalies and potential issues, all while providing remote diagnostics. Even more impressively, drivers themselves could take direct action based on these remote recommendations. It translates to saved time, fewer trips, and, ultimately, cost savings.

are NFTs the future of used cars?

REALITY CHECK

are NFTs the future of used cars?

Don’t you just love to hate NFTs? Even the name “non-fungible token” seems to have been invented just to confuse you. So what is this technology doing in the used-car market? Well, it’s being used to guarantee what up until now was a major barrier in this market: trust.

  • connectivity
  • shared mobility

what is an NFT?

To understand what an NFT is, first you have to understand the blockchain – which is an internet network on which data is exchanged and archived in a decentralised way, so basically, without a middleman. It’s the user who guarantees the data distribution and verification. NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are cryptographic assets, such as an image, a contract or an original creation, which are stored on the blockchain. So basically anything that can be digitised can be an NFT. An NFT can be compared to a work of art: it can be passed on or copied, but remains resolutely unique and indivisible – or “non-fungible,” in economic terms. Each NFT is therefore given an identifier which guarantees its authenticity and ownership, which cannot be counterfeited. As such, the ownership certificate and maintenance log that follow a vehicle throughout its life are data like any other. So it was only to be expected that the car industry and NFTs would someday join forces.

why would a decentralised system be more secure than any other type?

The advantage of a centralised system is that it always converges towards an entity that ensures its proper functioning. For example, for a computer network, all workstations link to the same central server. Although it’s easier to manage, if there’s a breakdown or hacking, the entire network goes down. A decentralised system avoids such risk. If one part of the network malfunctions, it doesn’t prevent the rest of the network from functioning properly. However, this is not enough to guarantee that information cannot be falsified. The blockchain has a solution for this. It’s often compared to a ledger shared by its users: everyone can write in it and check what is written, but no one can decide to change or delete information unilaterally. This kind of system is based on data transparency, i.e. all users have free access. It’s quite easy to understand what advantages the used-car market, which is looking for traceability, can get from this feature. This shared accessibility coupled with data interconnection is what ensures greater integrity in a decentralised system.

why buy a car NFT?

First of all, an NFT is a piece of data. It’s not necessarily something that can be bought. A car NFT therefore concerns information relating to a vehicle. In fact, it’s similar to a sort of digital maintenance log which records directly on the blockchain the various transactions implemented throughout its life, such as its mileage, repairs with new spare parts, car services or tyre changes. Any maintenance performed is automatically added to its associated NFT and cannot be altered, thus giving buyers, garages and insurers a complete history of the car. This obviously changes a lot of things, especially for the used car market. Odometer fraud (or mileage clocking) and modifying any repair work has now become impossible. At the time of resale, the car NFT offers added value for the seller and traceability of repairs for the buyer.

is it really impossible to cheat with this system?

Yes, once the information has been entered into the NFT, it is impossible to defraud it. The risk of deliberately withholding information is all the rarer now that the handling of accidents and breakdowns is highly digitised, so we can legitimately conclude that the NFT is secure.

is the tech already gaining ground in the industry?

The first vehicles with an NFT digital certificate have already been released on the market, available in a rather high-end positioning whereby the NFT strengthens the models’ unique character. The vehicles marketed today will therefore have this original guarantee which will follow them throughout their existence. For now, NFTs are mainly put forward as a selling point to attract drivers who are early adopters of digital tech. But a market is undeniably emerging. It’s not really surprising when you realise just how connected vehicles are to the digital world today. In the future, vehicles will undoubtedly no longer be released on the market without a certificate.

how else are NFTs being used?

NFT couldn’t stop there. Related initiatives are now being developed in the world of cars. For example, Renault launched a blockchain-based experience to celebrate the 50th anniversary of its iconic R5. On top of that, the carmakers launched its Racing Shoe5, a range of sneakers whose design is inspired by the legendary Renault 5 Turbo, available to buy from the brand’s first virtual, immersive store. Buyers are assigned a digital collectible, an artistic representation of their shoes in the form of an NFT, which also contains all the information related to the product, such as to prove their authenticity, the materials used, their origin and the date of purchase. This exclusive ownership deed can then be used to collect the sneakers “in real life.” This is a successful example of the real and the virtual combining together, which proves that the use of NFTs is not reserved for insiders only, but can have many applications in our daily lives. It goes to show that the only thing probably limiting this expanding market is our own imaginations.

electric vehicle charging stations: where and when to charge your car?

bornes recharge electrique
GUIDEBOOK

electric vehicle charging stations: where and when to charge your car?

Service stations are part of the familiar landscape for filling up a combustion-powered car, particularly in suburban areas. Their architecture, signage and layout make them easy to spot and accessible to all motorists. But what about filling up an electric or rechargeable hybrid car? The solutions are both more diverse and less visible. Electric charging points have as many characteristics as they have types of location, and therefore types of use… Follow the guide.

  • electric vehicle

1) fast lane recharging stations: taking a break along the way

When they are installed on fast lanes, such as motorways or trunk roads, charging stations offer high power, of at least 43 kW, suitable for a short break. The Mobilize Fast Charge ultra-fast charging network will soon be offering 200 new stations across Europe, so there’s no need to worry about running out of power! Fast-charging stations can charge electric cars in less than thirty minutes, enough time to go from almost empty to almost full. That’s enough time for the driver, too, to recharge personal batteries before getting back on the road. Note that the cost of electricity delivered in this way is higher than that of a slower recharge, because the price per kW/h is closely linked to the power of the current.

 

Fast-charging infrastructures generally deliver direct current (DC), and electric vehicles designed for road use are equipped with DC chargers. For example, thanks to the high recharging power provided by their DC chargers, Renault E-TECH Electric, Megane and Zoe can be recharged as part of a natural journey. Whether you’re going on holiday or on a long business trip, long road journeys are punctuated by breaks that allow you to rest and have something to eat. On the motorway, fast charging of the Megane or Zoe E-TECH Electric makes the most of these stops to recover, in just a few minutes, enough range to reach the next stage or the final destination.

2) electric charging points in shopping centres: charging your car in hidden time

Why not fill up your electric car at the same time as your shopping? It’s all the more appealing because the charging points in the car parks of supermarkets and shopping centres are cheap or even free to use. For many retail chains, recharging electric cars is shaping up to be the “new wifi”, in other words, an essential service for their customers on a daily basis.

 

Retailers are already meeting this demand, or preparing to meet it, in a variety of ways: with conventional alternating current (AC) charging points, generally between 7 and 22 kW, and with fast direct current (DC) charging points, capable of releasing power in excess of 50 kW. The more powerful the charging point, the faster the recharging rate for the motorist, but the more expensive it is for the retailer to set up. The power for each chargepoint is therefore tailored to the average parking time at the site. By way of example, the Renault Megane E-TECH Electric recovers up to 160 kilometres of city driving in an hour’s charge on a 22 kW AC public charging point, while the Dacia Spring needs less than an hour to recharge to 80% on a 30 kW DC charging point.

3) on-street charging points for electric cars: recover range with every parking space

The figure of 400,000 public access charging points in Europe is impressive but conceal many geographical disparities. By expanding on-street charging networks, local authorities are playing an important role in the development of low-carbon mobility. Deploying these public infrastructures makes it easier for users of electric or hybrid vehicles to recharge their cars, especially city dwellers who have neither their own parking space nor – a fortiori – their own recharging solution. City centres offer opportunities for recharging on the street or in car parks, often with free parking. So you can use a meal in a restaurant or a shopping break to recharge the battery in your electric car. And for the future, Mobilize Iléo Concept is proposing an urban layout where you can recharge your vehicle while sitting out of the weather or in a heatwave.

 

The charging points for electric vehicles found on the public highway deliver alternating current (AC) with a power ranging from 7 to 22 kW. The Twingo E-TECH Electric simply takes a half-hour break connected to a 22 kW station to regain around 80 kilometres of range, and the Zoe E-TECH Electric recovers up to 125 kilometres of range in 2 hours of charging at an 11 kW station, for mixed journeys.

4) reinforced socket or wallbox: benefit from a home charging station

What could be nicer than not having to make a diversion to the service station or queue to fill up? With electric mobility, every private place can potentially be transformed into a “petrol station”, whether it’s the house where you live, the company building where you work or, why not, your grandparents’ house, where you spend the day. While plugging your car into a conventional power socket is not advisable, it’s easy to install a reinforced 3.2 kW socket, or even a wall-mounted charging point, also known as a “wallbox”, capable of delivering power ranging from 3.7 to 22 kW in alternating current (AC). Mobilize Power Solutions‘ services support both private individuals and professionals in the design, installation and maintenance of their own recharging solution.

 

The vast majority of electric car recharging is carried out at home, in private homes or shared ownership, with full recharging often taking place overnight. For a Dacia Spring, for example, it takes less than nine hours to charge from 0 to 100% on a 3.7 kW wallbox, and less than fourteen hours on a 2.3 kW domestic socket. The Renault Megane E-TECH Electric, meanwhile, recovers up to 400 kilometres in mixed driving in eight hours on a 7.4 kW wallbox. As well as the obvious convenience of this charging method, it’s also a particularly economical way of filling up. When you’ve got all night ahead of you, you can make do with a slow charge, i.e. low power… at a low cost! What’s more, home charging can be easily programmed to start when the electricity rate is at its lowest, if your contract includes off-peak hours. They can even take advantage of smart charging, which adjusts the rate at which the vehicle is charged according to the availability of electricity on the grid, so as to consume the least carbon-intensive and cheapest energy possible. The Mobilize Smart Charge application takes care of everything.

 

Mobilize offers recharging solutions to suit everyone’s day-to-day needs, from private individuals and businesses to mobility professionals in the car-sharing and chauffeur-driven car sectors. So electric mobility is a matter of course for everyone.

how the electric car is keeping pace with new forms of mobility

voiture electrique
LEVEL UP

how the electric car is keeping pace with new forms of mobility

Buy a car, enjoy it and maintain it for a few years, then change it? Objectively speaking, the traditional pattern of car ownership is not always the most attractive for the user. Not to mention the fact that it has a negative impact on natural resources. Car-sharing, on-demand transport, car-pooling… Solutions are emerging that are based on the “car” object, while going beyond the model of the individual car. To minimise running costs and environmental impact, the new forms of mobility are mainly electric.

  • electric vehicle
  • energy transition
  • shared mobility
  • transport on demand

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the electric vehicle, an ally of car-sharing, short-term car hire and chauffeur-driven cars

Experiencing car-sharing often means discovering the advantages of electric mobility, given the over-representation of 100% electric vehicles in the car-sharing fleet. Whether it’s free-floating car-sharing, which is mainly found in large cities because the roads are so dense there, or car-sharing with pick-up and drop-off stations that can be likened to short-term hire accessible via a smartphone, car-sharing offers give pride of place to electric mobility. Mobilize is deploying a range of new mobility solutions, from car-sharing to short-term car hire, thanks to its Zity by Mobilize and Mobilize Share offers. Did you know that a vehicle remains parked on average 95% of the time, a quarter of which corresponds to parking outside the home? Electric car-sharing makes the most of these periods of immobility, because every time you park is potentially an opportunity to recharge your vehicle.

The chauffeur-driven car sector is also booming. It is expected to almost double in Europe over the next 10 years. Taxis and chauffeur-driven cars are particularly well represented in major conurbations. As a complement to urban public transport, they meet occasional needs for flexible, safe and comfortable transport. Companies in the sector, as well as self-employed drivers, are attracted by electric vehicles, in particular for reasons of low running costs. But also because an electric car can be used in city centres and Low Emission Zones (LEZ) reserved for the least polluting vehicles. A definite competitive advantage!

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electric mobility at the heart of the Mobility as a Service (MaaS) model

Watch any film or series at any time? Listen to an album or playlist under any circumstances? Stay informed via different channels depending on the time of day or week? Choose your meal and have it delivered within the hour? In many areas, everyone is gradually getting used to consuming everything on demand. Why should mobility be any different? Technological innovations, based on connectivity in general and the use of smartphones in particular, are opening up a whole new world of possibilities.

The traditional model of owning a private car can be seen as constraining, as it is associated with problems of maintenance, insurance, parking, etc. The freedom you feel at the wheel of your car could be overshadowed by the mental and financial burden you have to bear. Mobilize, the Renault Group brand dedicated to new forms of mobility, responds to this problem. The car – of course 100% electric – is designed as the central element of the offering, without purchase being the only means of acquisition. The Mobilize Duo micro-city car will be an example of this from 2024. Above all, the car is inseparable from a whole range of complementary services, including insurance, maintenance and vehicle charging. The package is marketed in the form of a subscription and can be adapted as the user’s needs change, for maximum flexibility.

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the electric car, the symbol of clean motoring

The electric vehicle is therefore best suited to the new forms of mobility, which replace the notion of car ownership with the notion of car use. It is no longer a question of drawing on natural resources to manufacture a product, consuming that product and then throwing it away, according to the traditional model of the linear economy. This is where the principle of the circular economy comes into its own. The same vehicle is used by several people, and studies show that a car-sharing scheme replaces 5 to 8 private cars.

Electro-mobility is also closely linked to ecomobility. Despite the environmental impact of battery production, an electric car driven in Europe emits almost 3 times less greenhouse gases than an equivalent internal combustion vehicle throughout its life cycle. So, electric mobility is a significant lever in the fight against global warming.

With zero emissions on the move, excluding wear parts, the electric car emits no CO2… and its engine emits no pollutants either! This advantage is particularly valuable in cities, where traffic density and population density overlap. Modelling shows that electrifying 20% of the vehicle fleet in city centres reduces the concentration of volatile compounds by 45% and fine particles by 25%. The electric vehicle therefore has a role to play in both environmental and public health terms, particularly in terms of urban mobility.

from green mobility to sustainable transport, solutions are emerging

mobilite durable
REBOOT

from green mobility to sustainable transport, solutions are emerging

Green mobility is increasingly establishing itself as a credible alternative to the private car. But is it as simple, flexible and synonymous with freedom as its rival? A whole range of green mobility options are emerging to cover as many uses as possible. There are several ways of reducing the environmental impact of our journeys.

  • energy transition
  • shared mobility
  • transport on demand

green mobility: a growing family

Originally, the definition of green mobility was simple. It encompassed all forms of non-motorised mobility, i.e. modes of travel that depend on physical activity. It was then broadened to include all forms of mobility that are alternatives to the private car.

Green mobility therefore includes active forms of mobility such as walking and cycling. It also includes innovations stemming from electric mobility, such as battery-powered bicycles, electric scooters, unicycles and hoverboards. In these cases, the driving energy is not provided solely, if at all, by physical effort. Today, new forms of mobility of sustainable transport such as car-sharing and car-pooling are also part of green mobility.

What do they have in common? Compared with the private car or thermal public transport, they reduce greenhouse gas emissions and pollutants when driving… as well as noise and odour pollution. Green mobility and sustainable mobility, also called “eco-mobility” are one and the same. Not to mention the fact that active mobility is also good for your health, helping to rebalance a lifestyle that is often sedentary.

sustainable transport and short journeys: the ideal marriage

Less pollution and less noise. It’s everything city dwellers can dream of, especially in city centres and narrow streets that are rapidly becoming congested with car traffic. Sustainable transport, whether active or electric, is ideal for covering short distances. The city is therefore their most obvious playground. City dwellers use green mobility mainly for journeys of less than 2 kilometres. They make it possible to get from A to B more efficiently than by car, because they avoid many of the problems of traffic jams and parking.

Beyond this short average distance, the public transport network in the city is efficient enough for you to opt for the bus, metro or tram. Green mobility therefore complements public transport. And their uses can even be combined: it’s not unusual to see someone getting on the bus with an electric scooter slung over their shoulder.

new forms of individual mobility: a cohabitation to be invented

It’s not always easy to reconcile these different modes of transport. On pavements, walking remains the most widespread form of green mobility. However, pedestrians have to share this precious space with rollerbladers, skateboards and motorless scooters… As for cycle paths, they are no longer used only by bicycles. They also include all kinds of electric vehicles (scooters, hoverboards, gyropods, monowheels, light mopeds, etc.).

Safety concern is a corollary of the boom in these “personal mobility devices”, as this new form of individual sustainable transport is sometimes mislabelled as “soft mobility”. To avoid an increase in the number of accidents, electric mobility devices in built-up areas should only be used on cycle paths and by drivers aged 12 or over. Outside built-up areas, they may be authorised on roads with an 80km/h speed limit, in which case the user must wear a helmet, reflective equipment and ride with the parking lights on.

green mobility and more demanding journeys: a response for every need

While many city dwellers are happy with active mobility and personal mobility devices, these solutions are not suitable for everyone, or for all uses. Must you catch the 8.10am flight loaded down with big suitcases? Need to bring home the furniture you’ve just bought? Having trouble walking? The private car is no longer the only solution for these special cases.

For journeys within the city or to the suburbs, other mobility services are taking over, such as taxis and chauffeur-driven cars, or car-sharing vehicles. Zity by Mobilize, the 100% electric car-sharing service, is present in the major cities of France, Spain and Italy. Its mobile application and free-floating access (i.e. no pick-up or drop-off stations) mean that anyone can find a vehicle close to their point of departure, and park it close to their point of arrival after use.

People who need to travel longer distances or to places with less public transport can also find alternatives to the traditional pattern of owning a private car. Away from the major conurbations, car-sharing take the form of short-term rental services, such as Mobilize Share. And let’s not forget car-pooling, which can be arranged efficiently for commuting to work, as well as for more exceptional and longer journeys.

tomorrow, rethinking the cities in depth

REBOOT

tomorrow, rethinking the cities in depth

Too densely populated, too hot and too polluted. The cities of today are no longer aligned with current social and environmental issues. The time has come to adapt rather than simply observe. Cities must be updated to focus on mobility, connectivity and sustainability. The good news is that, generally, the solutions are already out there! But they require a fundamental rethink of how cities are designed. By developing a mobility and energy transition strategy that goes beyond the traditional car, Mobilize aims to play an active role in the positive evolution of cities, in “reboot” mode.

  • energy transition
  • shared mobility
  • transport on demand

REBOOT 1: soothing the urban spaces

As the cities of tomorrow will no longer accommodate large flows of traffic, part of the space previously given over to cars will be redistributed to meet different needs. This reallocation will accelerate the decarbonization of travel, in particular with the development of cycle paths and infrastructure for storing and maintaining bicycles, parking and recharging spaces for electric vehicles, parcel storage facilities, pedestrian walkways, etc.

This reclaimed street space will open up a number of possibilities for the greening of areas, whereas trees and other shrubbery can also be used to bring nature to other forms of open space, such as rooftops or alcoves. The greening of urban spaces has multiple benefits. It helps to control air pollution, promotes the return of biodiversity to cities and creates shady, cool islands in hot weather. As a result, the use of air conditioning, which is harmful to the environment, decreases both in buildings and cars. The use of photovoltaic shading systems over parking areas, which shelter cars from the sun’s rays while recharging their batteries, also has an impact on maintaining this “temperate city”.

REBOOT 2: meeting every mobility need

Many obstacles prevent seamless and stress-free travel in cities, such as being stuck in traffic jams, looking for a parking space for a long time once you arrive at your destination, or having to pay fixed costs for your car whatever the circumstances. The development of multimodal transport solutions, via increasingly extensive public transport and soft mobility services, can address these issues. However, this is not the only solution.

The “Vehicle as a Service” (VaaS) model offers an effective and complementary response. The private car is no longer the be-all-and-end-all of transport. With VaaS, customers can select the vehicle best suited to their needs, by purchasing, leasing or car-sharing, and can opt – just as flexibly – for exclusive services to simplify their lives, as well as reducing their costs and carbon footprint. Public transport or cycles for commuting, a compact electric car for effortless door-to-door travel, a hybrid family car for a long trip as a group, etc. Mobility services should be flexible, both when travelling around the city and beyond its limits.

REBOOT 3: optimizing daily life through data

The cities of tomorrow will be smart: a city made “intelligent” through effective data management, with a view to providing services to people. With real-time mapping of the use of public space, the different local stakeholders can better tailor their solutions to users’ needs, whether in terms of mobility, energy, cleanliness, or safety, etc. For example, when applied to mobility services, if companies are aware of the traffic flows in a given place and at a given time, they can model the situation and develop a range of services that will improve the experience for everyone.

Data also has a crucial role to play in balancing the electricity grid, in order to maximize the use of low-carbon, renewable energy in the city’s energy mix. Smart charging of electric vehicles is a perfect example. The car and the electrical grid are connected via the charging station and a smartphone app – the car is charged at a time when electricity is most available on the grid, i.e. when it is the cheapest and least carbon-intensive. Conversely, when demand for electricity from the grid is greater than the overall supply, charging of the vehicle is suspended. If using a bi-directional charging system, the vehicle can even return electricity to the grid, avoiding the need to produce electricity from fossil fuels. In this way, data can be used to improve user comfort and to drive forward the energy transition.

REBOOT 4: pooling resources

In the dense and geographically-constrained areas that constitute cities, the sharing of spaces and services is both the preferable and easier option. Sharing resources is already a given in an urban environment. Cramped housing provides limited facilities to meet basic needs. To satisfy ever more diverse expectations, city residents are making the most of public space or “third places”. The rise in remote working and mobile professions is driving the creation of shared “co-working” spaces, and leisure activities and entertainment are consumed in many dedicated common spaces, etc.

In terms of mobility, people in the city are rarely far away from a transport service. Shared use of cars, bikes and scooters is a convenient solution, whether vehicles are left at drop-off stations or on the street after use. With a simple smartphone, anyone can locate the most appropriate mode of transport available in the immediate vicinity. In some cases, a smartphone is also used as a pass to operate the vehicle and pay for the journey. Sharing urban spaces and services provides a flexible solution to a wide range of needs.

Smooth, mobile, connected, shared… life will be enriching in the cities of tomorrow! Cities must strike a balance between individual benefits – in particular, consumption “on demand” – and the collective benefits of protecting the environment public health, etc. Mobilize already has solutions: a reboot to move towards simpler, more resilient, and more collective transport services, where citizens are free from the shackles of personal cars and can actively contribute to achieving carbon neutrality within the city.