Tuup

Tuup

Tuup is a digital solution for peoples everyday mobility. This app makes it possible to travel around without owning your own car or vehicle. Integrated in the app are all possible ways of transport, including car-sharing. On the routeplanner you select where you want to start and finish and Tuup tells you how you can get there and you pay up-front for all the services through this app. It’s even possible to select the most environmental friendly route or if you are in a hurry you can select the most efficient way to travel. To give a more exact estimation of the travel time Tuup uses open data for example delays during peak hour.

Why is Tuup necessary in the future?

Tuup makes it possible to travel everywhere you want using just a single app and there is no need to own a vehicle. It’s a more sustainable way of everyday life and mobility. It even allows you to rent out your bike or car while you are not using it. A great idea as your vehicle is not used for 99% of the time. During this time your vehicle can make money for you.

Interview

Watch the full interview with CEO of Tuup Pekka Möttö.

E-mobility in Austria

Mountains, lakes, snow and sun. In Austria you can have it all in a single day. It’s a joy to drive around the country, especially with an electric car. In Austria an EV really is in it’s natural environment. The country’s infrastructure is well organized.

I entered Austria from Italy and arrived in Corinthia, a southern province with thousands of lakes. The local government invested a lot in charging locations. They have this funny looking spots with chairs attached so you can read a book while you charge the car. Funny thing is that besides two Type 2 connectors the station has two CEE blue plugs which you normally find at campings. Probably for E-bikes.

Austria’s biggest provider of charging stations is Smatrix, they provide many stations throughout the country and also fast chargers. They made a deal with McDonalds and for costumers it’s free to charge your car. The stations are placed on handy locations which makes a road trip through the country pretty easy. Maybe a few fast chargers near highways would take away the final bit of range-anxiety.
The Austrian government has made a new law which says that when a new parking lot is being build, 25% of the parking spaces need the have a charger. This makes the Marinadl shopping center in Krems an der Donau with 55 chargers the biggest charge location in the country.

There are many EV-enthusiasts who started their own clubs to promote and share knowledge about e-mobility. I met Thomas Feck-Meltzer who is the founder of the Zoe Club Austria and doesn’t even own a Zoe. He believes electric cars are the future and want to promote it this way.
There is even a guy who drives around the country every weekend to check if the charging stations are working and reports this on apps like Chargemap.

Many big EV events take place throughout the country. The E-tour Europe had his finish in Salzburg. This is a big event where many teams compete against each other, of course many Tesla’s are in the race but also Leafs, Zoe’s and even the electric tuc tuc from the Pillgreens joined the rally.
The finish was held at the Kaiserhof Hotel. This hotel is completely adjusted to electric cars and thus called the ‘chargehotel’. They have around 5 type 2 sockets, 5 32A sockets, a fast charger and 4 Tesla SuperChargers. In the coming years they want to apply a charger to every station.

Another big event taking place is the Wave Trophy, organized by Louis Palmer who drove around the world in an solar car. It’s an event with a good story, they collect the wished of children about a better future and at the finish they deliver this to the United Nations HQ in Bern.

Austria is a good example of how EV infrastructure can be applied. Not many people drive electric so the balance between EV’s and stations is good. In Holland you can get the problem that you have to wait in line to charge, that might happen in Austria when there more people will drive electric but if they continue to build more stations it will stay perfect.

E-Mobility in Italy

For two weeks I’ve been driving through Italy, saw how the EV infrastructure is developing and talked to insiders about the current state and future of E-mobility in this great country.

Italy has many faces. The landscapes are stunning, the people have great character, flair and temperament. Driving through small towns and big cities is a pure joy, it’s like you’re in a movie set. On the other side you have the expensive highways (which I avoided) and the controversies in the political system. People in the north of Italy pay way more taxes as the southern’s do. Unofficially because of the maffia who is still active in the southern regions.

Interesting enough there are some parallels with e-mobility in Italy, well, not as huge as maffia business but there are good and bad sides. Perhaps “the good, the bad and the ugly” is a better comparison to the current state of e-mobility here.

To start with the good: Italy lends itself as an ideal country to drive electric. The temperature is mostly around 20 degrees and distances are not big, which is ideal for the range. Every medium to big city has multiple charging stations, almost all placed and operated by Enel Net, a national power company. The stations are easy recognizable and the Enel Drive (which is the official name for Enel’s charging network) app shows all the stations on a map. What’s even better: all public charging stations have free parking, even right in the center of Milan. Sometimes it feels like being a VIP as many parking spots are separated from the regular ones.

There are many small companies and initiatives who are promoting e-mobility and play a big part in the development of the infrastructure and make others enthusiastic to start driving electric. For example e-move.me who’s mission is to electrify all the transport in Milan and around. They sell e-scooters, e-bikes, e-motors and install wallboxes wherever needed. Then there is Marcos from Vado Elettrico who places stations at restaurants, hotels and more. Evbility does the same in the Bergamo region.

Currently there is a plan to install 14 fast charging stations before the final of the UEFA Champions League, as they expect a lot of tourists from other countries. Speaking of fast chargers, this brings us to the bad.

The bad: the lack of fast chargers! I haven’t seen any of them. I have to make a side-note here that I haven’t been actively searching for them as my car cant fast charge but in other countries I did bumped into them. Fast chargers are a must as you want to travel longer distances.

Another problem is the lack of charging stations outside of the cities. Near highways or villages they are very rare. A mistake in your planning, a not working station or an unexpected detour can cause problems and range-anxiety.

Then the ugly: the unreliable electricity network of the country! It happened many times that the charging station stopped after a few minutes. Unplugging the car, waiting for a few minutes before the station resets itself and then plugging it back in again is the only solution. And possibly you have to repeat this ritual a few times in the process. This way you have to stay around the car, avoiding the risk that the car is still empty when returning from a day sightseeing in one of the beautiful cities. At first I thought it was a problem with my car in particular, but from other Italian e-drivers I heard its happens to them too.

Another remarkable fact is that they have plugs which a slightly different as the conventional ones. Besides the regular Type 2 cable they have a Type 3A and Type 3C plug. It looks a bit like a Chinese plug. I didn’t see the cable itself nor a car with these charging possibilities.

The country has the potential of becoming a tourist attraction for electric drivers too but few steps have to be made. Hopefully on my way back Italy has become the e-paradise that it promises to be.

E-Trailer

The E-Trailer is an electric powered system that drives a caravan. This solves a lot of problems conventional caravans encounter. With the build-in E-trailer you can pull a caravan with every car, even small, light-weight and energy efficient cars. This way driving a caravan becomes safer, cheaper and easier. The E-trailer consists of two wheels with build-in electric motors, lightweight batteries with lithium-ion batteries and intelligent control system.

 

Bubble Post

The environment is under pressure from thousands of tons of Co2 emitted by vehicles every day. Bubble Post aims to make logistic transportation 100% ecological. The company was founded in 2013 in Gent and is now delivering in 40 cities throughout Belgium and Netherlands. Currently they have 200 employees. The goods are delivered to warehouses at the outskirts of the city, where they are carefully sorted and bundled. Then the goods are delivered per bike, electric cars and electric vans.

 

 

Partago

Partago is an innovative car-sharing network based in Gent, Belgium. Partago is a co-operation so all their members own a part of the company. At the moment they have three Renault Zoë’s driving around in the city. With an app members can reserve a car and pick it up at their desired time. Soon they want to have an electric car in every neighbourhood of the city.
I interviewed Joachim Jacob, the owner of the Partago. Joachim has a clear view on the current state of e-mobility in Belgium which he explains in the interview.

 

 

Vincent Everts

Vincent Everts is a trendwatcher, TV-host, gadgetfreak and most of all EV-enthusiast. In his Tesla Model S he invited people from the industry to talk about their business.
When I launched the website of Plug Me In back in June Vincent picked it up immideately and invited me in his Tesla. Back then the project was still a concept. When he heard that I was on my way he send me a text and invited me to come over for bed, bread and battery.

During this evening I asked Vincent about the future of electric cars and e-mobility, the new Tesla Model X and 3 and his vision on sustainability.

EV Company

EV Company arose from the belief that electric cars make an essential contribution to the transition to a more sustainable mobility. From their passion for electric vehicles, they deliver innovative charging products that contribute to this transition. Their charging solutions give electric cars the freedom to drive.

Maarten Schuring is the CEO of the company and has a clear vision on how the future of e-mobility will look like. Watch the interview to hear als his thoughts.