The Future of Transportation is Electric

The ways people get from one place to another is constantly evolving. For a while, boats were the coolest way to get around. Then, carriages and wagons made their way across dirt roads. Next was the good ol’ train, hauling goods and the masses across the country before we finally settled on cars, buses and airplanes. The next step? Figuring out how to make these methods of transportation sustainable.
Today, that push for sustainability seems to be gaining momentum and driving renewed interest in electricity as the power behind our movements. Sir Richard Branson (who once rode a Faraday around San Francisco) recently claimed, “In 20 years there will be no cars being built with diesel or petrol internal combustion engines anywhere in the world.” Sounds like an electric future to us.
Here are a few signs that Mr. Branson could be right, and transportation is going to be more electric in coming years.
While people have been talking about electric cars since the Jetson’s promised us flying cars back in the 70’s, the future of cars has never seemed to arrive. But, a new generation of electric vehicles, along with higher consumer education about the benefits of electric, is changing that.
One of the main concerns with any electric transportation is, of course, range. But all of these companies have addressed this with fairly long-range cars. It might not get you from San Francisco to Los Angeles in one charge, but these electric bikes are only becoming more and more efficient. General Motors’ all-electric Bolt EV, for example, is expected to arrive in 2016 with an estimated range of at least 200 miles.
Toyota is another innovator to watch for. The company stated that its Mirai hydrogen fuel cell vehicle will have a 312 mile range between fill-ups, surpassing Tesla’s Model S 85D, which boasts about 270 miles on a single charge. With these impressive ranges, it seems like cars will continue to head in the electric direction. Maybe the Jetson’s flying cars, moving sidewalks and friends like Rosie the robot are much closer than we think.
Bikes have been around as long as those wagons that were riding along the bumpy trails back in the day. But now, more people are looking at electric bikes not just as a novelty or something the hobbyist down the street patched together, but a convenient way of tackling hills and speeding up commutes. Electric bikes have been on the verge of breaking through for years now.
With the help of traditional car companies, along with a new breed of electric bikes that are custom-built from the group up to be electric, and improving biking infrastructure across the US, eBikes are starting to become another real option for moving America away from the gas pump and toward a more sustainable future.
It’s been clear for a few years now that car companies see eBikes as part of their future. A point that was driven home when Ford recently-debuted an eBike concept, which folds up to fit in your trunk, that captures the need for bikes that meet a variety of commuting patterns.
PorteurS Lifestyle 1
A desire to fuel this switch from gas-powered cars to electric bikes was an underlying motivation for the founding of Faraday. And being rooted in the desire to provide a new way of getting around in the world we think our Faraday Porteur is the eBike for today’s urban rider, due to its lightweight frame and powerful boost mode. Many people are turned off by eBikes because of how they look – with big external batteries and chunky frames – but this European-inspired style fits the needs of people who want to ride electric without the electric look.
In fact, experts believe that within 20 years, the United States will be one of the world’s top markets for electric bicycles. As of now, it looks like we won’t be ruling out eBikes as a practical option anytime soon.
It’s Not All Bikes and Cars
So, what else is going electric? Boomerangs? Surfboards? Robot dinosaurs? Not exactly. Electric powered vehicles and bikes are here to stay, but check out a few of these other cool modes of transportation that are changing the way we get around.
Electric buses are catching on in major cities across the globe. A Swedish city has introduced some of its first fully electric buses thanks to Volvo, and some of London’s famous double-decker buses will follow suit as well later this year.
The question, then, comes down to cost. A Business Insider writer claims that electric buses are actually cheaper in the long run: “Each bus requires about $5,000 to $10,000 a year for electricity; in comparison, the average diesel bus costs about $50,000 annually and natural gas buses cost about $30,000.” Sounds like a good idea to us.
While we’re more of a biking bunch, we appreciate great technology when we see it. Even skateboards today are going electric, like the Monolith and Boosted Boards. So, you can still look cool while also getting a boost. And for those who live within just a few miles from work, this extra push could cut a dreaded, lengthy commute by a lot.
And lastly, don’t think we forgot you scooter enthusiasts. Scooters have always been popular among kids… don’t tell us you’ve never owned one and shredded it up around your neighborhood. But now, they’re becoming a more practical method of commuting and getting around town, especially the electric brands like EcoReco. And if your heart is set on the classic Razor scooter, don’t worry – they’ve gone electric too.
So, is Sir Richard Branson right about the future? Will the world be totally different in 20 years’ time? We can’t tell you for sure. When you look at transportation since the beginning, it’s amazing to see how far we’ve come. But, looking at all the methods of transportation that are going electric, it seems like people are striving to create more sustainable methods of getting around, and that electric is here to stay.