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Hiriko folding EV chosen for Berlin car-sharing program

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January 4, 2013

The Hiriko folding electric car has been chosen for a car-sharing program in Berlin

The Hiriko folding electric car has been chosen for a car-sharing program in Berlin

Last February, we reported on the Hiriko Fold electric car. The product of MIT's CityCar project, along with Denokinn (the Basque Center for Innovation) and a consortium of Spanish businesses, the tiny vehicle can actually tuck its rear end beneath its chassis – this allows it to fit into even the smallest of parking spaces. Recently, it was announced that a fleet of the cars will be used in a car-sharing program in Berlin.

Deutsche Bahn, the company that runs Germany’s railway network, chose the Fold to be part of a pilot project that will begin this year. The Hiriko vehicle was designed with car-sharing programs in mind, and even in its “unfolded” form is shorter than the smart fortwo, which is used in the popular car2go program.

The Fold will be used as a “last mile” step in Deutsche Bahn’s railway network, providing commuters with a means of getting from the train station to their final destination. Some of the cars will be tested on the roads of Berlin this year, with the official program scheduled to begin in 2014.

Source: Hiriko via AutoBlog Green

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.   All articles by Ben Coxworth
7 Comments

> "The Fold will be used as a “last mile” step in Deutsche Bahn’s railway network, providing commuters with a means of getting from the train station to their final destination."

Seems like a very expensive solution just for a couple of miles after you reach your train station. A bike-sharing program would 1) cost much less, 2) is good exercise, and 3) requires much less power. If people need to carry stuff, the program could include a couple of cargo bikes.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freight_bicycle

Freyr Gunnar
5th January, 2013 @ 03:43 am PST

An absurd idea but not as bad as using bicycles.

Slowburn
5th January, 2013 @ 08:13 am PST

Bicycles are a good choice for the final stretch in the summer months, but not realistic in the Winter time, so this is by far a better solution.

Omid Gharipour
6th January, 2013 @ 08:40 am PST

Great for the Canadian climate - rain, snow sleet, all avoided and right to my front door from the existing "Go-Train" system that connects all Southern Ontario! Excellent! P.S Please! Seat Heaters!

Bruce Miller
7th January, 2013 @ 08:13 am PST

Young people who don't mind rain or snow on their heads can certainly ride their bicycles instead of jumping into one of these little wonders! Please remember that some of us are no longer quite so agile and fearless. Get us onto a bike, and we might fall off. I look forward to trying out a Hiriko as soon as they arrive in my area.

ralph.dratman
7th January, 2013 @ 12:35 pm PST

This concept would be even greater if it would be combined with 'better place', where you simply exchange a drained for a full battery.

In Amsterdam we have car-2-go, I have the impression that many people use it instead of their bicycles especially when it rains, rather than people exchanging car-2-go for their own cars.

Anyway electric carsharing must be the future, strange that none of the big 5 have come up with similar concepts.

Kees de Voogd
8th January, 2013 @ 02:16 am PST

It seems to me that the operation cycle of a shared car precludes taking the time in charging the batteries to prevent excessive wear.

Slowburn
9th January, 2013 @ 10:53 am PST
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