Deliveries for Fisker’s new fully autonomous electric shuttle will start in late 2018.
Last week, legendary car designer Henrik Fisker announced on Twitter that he had something revolutionary in the works for a new segment to join the upcoming EMotion luxury sedan, promising that "the future of mobility will change forever." The teaser showed what looked like a futuristic transportation pod which was later revealed as the Fisker Orbit. Created as part of the company's alliance with China's Hakim Unique Group, the Orbit is being billed as the "world's most appealing autonomous shuttle for smart cities."
No specific details have been revealed, but Fisker confirmed that the Orbit will be a fully electric car like the EMotion with fully autonomous technology. According to Boss Magazine, Fisker and Hakim aim to "set a foundation" for autonomous vehicle transportation in major US cities with the electric shuttle. Fisker is already known for its EV technology, but Hakim isn't as well-known in the US, despite comprising of more than 160 subsidiaries worldwide and having a value of $32 billion. "Hakim Group is a very large group out of China that is already working on smart cities and many other things as well," Fisker explained to Boss Magazine. "They also own some areas of hospitals in L.A., coincidentally."
"I got to meet one of the group's directors in L.A., and we got talking about the future of mobility." The Orbit's peculiar egg-shape design looks like something out of an old science fiction set in the distant future, and can project text on the window to show pickup points and departure times among other information. Its futuristic design maximizes interior space which is inspired by modern hotel lobbies, allowing occupants to either stand or sit in the self-driving shuttle. "The combination of our breakthrough automotive technology, design prowess and unique vantage point as industry revolutionaries – and Jack's truly integrated vision of smart cities – is powerful," Fisker said in a statement.
"I am very excited about making the impossible, possible with intelligent urban ecosystems – starting with the development of one of the world's most forward-thinking and uniquely designed electric, autonomous shuttles: The Fisker Orbit." Deliveries for the Fisker Orbit are slated to start in October 2018, which sounds a tad optimistic considering that Fisker hasn't even specified where the Orbit's autonomous driving technology is coming from.