NEW BUZZ IN TOWN
The hotly anticipated ID. Buzz van from Volkswagen is expected to go on sale in several European countries in the third quarter of 2022, with the US to follow in late 2023.
The bus, an electric reboot of VW’s Microbus or Kombi, runs on an 82 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery and is able to hit maximum speeds of 145 kilometres per hour. A production version of the newcomer was unveiled in Paris earlier this year, making it the first in a series of prototypes released in the past 10 years to successfully make it to production stage.
“We very consciously ensured that we were not making another T1,” says Jozef Kaban, Head of Volkswagen Design. “The ID. Buzz shows that it is successfully transferring the genes and stylistic elements of that iconic vehicle into the digital era.”
The vehicle will be manufactured in Hanover with parts made largely by Volkswagen Group Components in Germany.
Bye-bye boring car journeys. Now those long drives can become multimodal gaming events thanks to holoride’s virtual reality (VR) entertainment system, which will debut in June in selected Audi models that are equipped with the latest MIB 3 software.
The system blends augmented reality with the physical-world experience of back-seat passengers, creating a “motion-synchronised” journey using VR glasses, which connect wirelessly to the vehicle using bluetooth low energy.
It will enable passengers to experience what holoride describes as “elastic content” – films, video games and interactive content that adapts to the real-time driving movements of the car.
The new technology was launched at the South by Southwest festival in the US, where delegates were able to experience the new offering.
Specialised “chip schools” will help Taiwan train its next generation of semiconductor engineers in order for the country to strengthen its position within this increasingly in-demand industry.
President Tsai Ing-wen is throwing his support behind the plans as chip companies invest billions to expand production capacity amid a global shortage. Chips are critical to power smartphones, aircraft and everything in between.
This year, chip giant TSMC has confirmed it will inject up to US$46.3 billion and hire more than 8,000 employees in order to meet demand.
With four motors on top and four at the bottom, the ZEVA Zero could be the future of transport. At least, that is what Co-Founder and CEO of the Washington-based startup Stephen Tibbitts hopes.
ZEVA’s prototype recently achieved a successful full-scale vertical take-off with a forward flight test next on the cards.
“It’s an octocopter. It’s a blended wing body and it generates lift as it’s flying forward,’ engineer and trained pilot Tibbitts explains.
Although the battery-powered aircraft attracted interest from the Pentagon and a number of wealthy people, the main target market is expected to be emergency services. “The customers that we view right now are first responders, medics that need to get on to the scene of an accident to treat trauma victims as soon as possible,” he says.