Tag Archives: Transportation

New Design Books: ‘The Motorcycle – Design, Art, Desire’ (Phaidon / Dec 2020)

An essential and compelling exploration of the design, history, and culture of the motorcycle – an icon of the machine age

Motorcycles are ubiquitous in the world’s streets and cities, evolving over decades in engineering and design to meet individual transportation needs. With the coming demise of the internal combustion engine and the rise of electric powered vehicles, motorcycle design is being revolutionized by new technologies, the demands of climate change, and global social transformation. The Motorcycle: Desire, Art, Design traces the exciting evolution of this automotive icon – and the culture of desire, freedom, and rebellion that surrounds it.

Motorcycle showcases 100 superb examples of motorcycle design from the late 19th century to the present day and beyond to the technological innovations of the future.

Beautifully illustrated with newly commissioned photography and archival ephemera, this visually arresting survey will prove compulsive reading to design lovers and motorcycle fans alike.

Read more

Top New Camper Vans: ‘Alphavan’ – Mercedes High-End Sprinter With “Unequaled Roominess”

The Alphavan is built on Mercedes’ largest Sprinter, the 736-cm (290-in)-long extra-long-wheelbase variant with super-high (299-cm+) roof. For comparison, that van is nearly 1.5 m (5 ft) longer than the Sprinter 144 that underpins notable campers like the Winnebago Revel and Westfalia James Cook. 

ALPHA Living Space

  • Spacious living room conveys home feeling
  • Choose from two different styles
    • Soft line: modern structured wooden finish combined with warm grey surfaces
    • Pure line: soft earthy white finish combined with warm grey surfaces
  • Seating covers can be exclusively individualized based on your request​
  • Feel yourself like home with a fantastic ceiling height of 2.10m (made possible by the extra height of the base vehicle)

ALPHA Kitchen

  • High quality design kitchen​
  • Single cast countertop – smooth rounded edges​​
  • Spacious drawers, feather-light movement and premium Soft-Close technology​​
  • Brushed stainless steel push locks enriching the design surfaces
  • Three generous compartments in the entry area allow for easy access of frequently used items​​
  • Two stowing compartments with integrated LED background lighting provide high end atmosphere while realizing superb practicability​​
  • A comfortably large 90 liters Dometic refrigerator in a central location welcomes you​​
  • The countertop blends beautifully into a flush mount two-burner Thetford induction cooker​
  • High-end sink armatures underline the elegance of the interior

ALPHA Bathroom

  • Spacious and bright bathroom with outside window, style “white-pure”​​
  • 100% water proof​​
    • Single cast bathroom construction
    • Polyurethane sealed edges
    • Side window with 100% waterproof frame fittings​
  • Thetford toilet with SOG ventilation system​​
  • Additional ceiling ventilation​​
  • Space saving pull-out sink
  • Extractable shower head​​
  • Water-protected storage bin in the upper area for showering items​​
  • Flush mount integrated bathroom door​​
  • Premium door handle with innovative magnet lock​​
  • Additional useful built-in closet between bathroom and sleeping area​​
  • Clothes rail in upper part​​
  • Shoe compartment in lower part

ALPHA Relax Area

  • Sleeping space of 200x160cm​​
  • High-end mattress​​
  • Sophisticated ventilation concept:
    • side-windows left and right for fresh air
    • ceiling window allowing circulation and unforgettable star gazing during clear nights​​
  • Windows with fly screens and separate shades

ALPHA FlexPort

  • Alpha FlexPort 220x170x128 cm (LxWxH)
  • Integrated chair holders in the rear doors​​​​​
  • Lashing system in the floor and side walls for safely securing stored equipment​​
  • Optional design storage bags for the side walls​​
  • Convenient hooks on rear doors and front wall of FlexPort​​
  • Seating and stowing capabilities on and inside the design round-edged floor cabinets left and right​​
  • Single cast closing flaps of the cabinets with integrated Soft-Close technology and warm grey design

Website

Best New Electric Bikes: “Ducati Urban-e Foldable E-Bike” – Top Italian Design

Urban-E, available in black or gray version, is built around the special aluminum frame, designed by the designers of the Ducati Style Center in collaboration with colleagues from the Industrial Design division of Italdesign, with an easy folding system that allows you to fold the e-bike in a few simple steps. 

The foldable frame is made of lightweight aluminum and the battery is fully integrated into the frame. It was born from a totally custom development project with Ducati Style Center and Italdesign as protagonists. The LED lights and the display are integrated into the frame becoming a real design element, one of a kind.

The handlebar has a fully integrated LCD display in the stem that allows you to check all the assistance functions, check the remaining battery charge and turn the LED lights on and off. Designers and planners have worked to create an e-bike with a clean and linear style. The 378 Wh battery is integrated into the frame and itself becomes an element of style, recalling the motorcycle tanks in the typical Ducati red color and arched shape.

Website

Transportation History: “The Rise And Fall Of Hertz” (CNBC Video)

Hertz was a pioneer in car rental and a highly recognized brand nearly as old as the American auto industry itself. Decimated by coronavirus, Hertz tried in mid-2020 to take advantage of an odd Robinhood-driven spike in its share price and sell stock to pay off its debts. At the time, the company admitted the shares it was selling could end up worthless. Will Hertz be able to emerge from bankruptcy in some form, or will this be the end of its century-long story.

The Future Of Driving: Michigan To Build USA’s First “Autonomous Vehicle Corridor”

The Detroit  News (Aug 13, 2020)— Michigan is angling to build a first-in-the-nation connected and autonomous vehicle corridor in the state’s southeast corner, the latest bid to ensure the region remains the epicenter of an auto industry moving rapidly into a technology-driven future.

Local and state government officials, members of Michigan’s congressional delegation, Ford Motor Co. executives and project developer Cavnue confirmed plans Thursday for a roadway that would stretch from downtown Detroit to Ann Arbor. Along the way, it would connect to such key milestones as the American Center for Mobility in Ypsilanti, the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and would parallel parts of Interstate 94 to Detroit Metropolitan Airport. 

The roadway would be publicly accessible and could feature both public transit and shared mobility options. It will be called the “Michigan Connected Corridor,” officials confirmed, sharpening a vision Ford shared when it acquired the historic train station two years ago. 

Read more

Technology: “China’s Self-Driving Car Boom” (WSJ)

Autonomous-vehicle road testing has skidded to a halt in the U.S. amid the Covid-19 pandemic. But China’s startups have pushed ahead by more than doubling the number of self-driving car projects, with a boost from the country’s 5G network.

Photo: Lorenz Huber for The Wall Street Journal

Travel & Leisure Videos: “Driven – The Rise Of RV’s”

Looking to take a vacation while avoiding COVID? Many families are heading out AND staying home, exploring public spaces while avoiding hotels and public bathrooms, by traveling in an RV. The pandemic is driving up sales of midrange recreational vehicles, which have nearly doubled compared to last summer. And as The New Yorker magazine’s Kelefa Sanneh finds out, some motorhomes have amenities you may not even have in your own home.

Aviation: “Top 15 Solar & Electric Aircraft” (2020)

Featured Electric Aircraft and Airplanes:

  1. 0:28 Bye Electric eFlyer All-electric training aircraft https://electricflyer.com/ Starts at USD $350,000
  2. 1:18 Yuneec E430 Low maintenance & simple to fly https://www.yuneec.com/en_US/home.html Starts at USD $89,000
  3. 1:58 Eviation Alice World’s first all-electric commuter https://www.eviation.co/ Starts at USD $4,000,000
  4. 2:49 Colomban Cri-Cri Smallest twin-motored manned aircraft Designed by Michel Colomban. Price depends on the build
  5. 3:34 EuroSport Crossover Two-seat motor glider Designed by Eurosport Aircraft Price unavailable
  6. 4:17 Long ESA Aircraft First electric aircraft to break 200 mph http://www.flightofthecentury.com/ Price depends on the build
  7. 4:54 Pipistrel ALPHA Electro World’s first two-seat electric trainer https://www.pipistrel-aircraft.com/ Starts at USD $98,000
  8. 5:49 AutoFlightX V600 Dual-wing, two-seater https://autoflightx.com/ Price unavailable
  9. 6:45 Pipistrel Taurus Electro First electric production two-seater https://www.pipistrel-aircraft.com/ Starts at USD $129,500
  10. 7:40 Airbus A3 Vahana Single-seat, tilt-wing eVTOL https://www.airbus.com/ Price unavailable
  11. 8:33 Sunseeker Duo First two-seat, solar powered airplane https://www.solar-flight.com/ Price unavailable
  12. 9:25 Ruppert Archaeopteryx High-wing, pod-and-boom, micro lift glider https://www.ruppert-composite.ch/en/ Starts at USD $78,000
  13. 10:17 NASA X-57 Maxwell Experimental aircraft from…NASA! https://www.nasa.gov/ Price unavailable
  14. 11:18 Solar Impulse 1 Experimental, long-range solar aircraft https://solarimpulse.com/ Price unavailable
  15. 12:12 Antares 23E Self-launch capable sailplane https://www.lange-aviation.com/ Price unavailable