Zeekr compact van to join Waymo UAV fleet – DRIVE

The Swedish CEVT center in Gothenburg is responsible for the development of the model, so the Chinese media are not familiar with it. It is only known that the van uses the new SEA-M (“for intelligent travel”) platform from the Geely SEA architecture. In terms of design, it is pertinent to recall the Volvo 360c concept.

The American company Waymo announced the start of cooperation with the Chinese group Geely Auto. The partners intend to promote transportation as a service (TaaS) primarily on US roads. The young subsidiary brand Zeekr has already prepared a new electric compact van, sharpened for Waymo equipment, but the introduction of the model (so far unnamed) into the taxi fleet will not happen soon – “in the coming years.”

Access inside is simplified by sliding doors on both sides, the absence of a B-pillar, a low threshold, a flat floor, and head and leg room. There will also be a version with steering wheel and pedals. The panoramic roof, popular in China, had to be abandoned, as Waymo’s hat was in the way.

The electrically adjustable front seats stand right in the middle of the aisle, and “lateral support” insures the riders from falling out. The touchscreen functions as a trip computer. There are no sun blinds, no air ducts, no tables in the gallery … However, displays and USB ports are promised.

It is stated that the safety level of the compact van “complies with US federal standards.” Nothing is said about the launch of the model in China, although the JiDU brand (an enterprise of Geely and Baidu) should be interested in the project. Probably, the Chinese have enough of their own drones (such as the Baidu Apollo) and “natural-born taxis” (FAW Bestune NAT, BYD D1).

Source: DRIVE.RU by www.drive.ru.

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