This article is part of the special topic "Future Mobility".

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self-driving buses are being trialled in Berlin and Hamburg where passengers can use the service for free
self-driving buses are being trialled in Berlin and Hamburg where passengers can use the service for free
( Source: gemeinfrei / Pixabay)

CASE CASE: the current state of connected, autonomous, shared, and electric mobility

| Updated on 23.11.2020Author / Editor: Jamie Thomson / Florian Richert

The acronym CASE, essentially refers to vehicles of the future. Connected, Autonomous, Shared and Electric vehicles are developing rapidly and are driving transformation across mobility ecosystems.

According to recent statistics reported by Forbes, ‘by 2030, there will be 700 million connected cars, 90 million autonomous vehicles and 250 million electric and hybrid vehicles on the roads.’

These vehicles of the future are changing how we travel, how we plan our journeys and the infrastructures of the cities we travel in.

Let’s take a closer look at the state of CASE mobility today:

Connected vehicles are already a reality

According to PWC’s 2019 Digital Auto Report, sales of 5G-enabled vehicles will reach 16 million in the EU, the US and China by 2030. While this might seem like a future innovation, the reality is that most cars already have internet access through embedded dashboard SIMs, or data connection from our smartphones.

As tech companies like Vinli continue to invest in car connectivity, we’re starting to see commercial providers like Uber and Cabify advertising their free WiFi to passengers as a way of providing next-level customer experience.

Digital music platforms like iTunes’ CarPlay are also making their mark behind the wheel by integrating their services into car display panels, eliminating the need for Bluetooth or USB connections.

For further reading on how connected mobility is impacting our infrastructures, take a look at our recent article Connected Mobility Explained.

Autonomous vehicles in public transportation

Connected vehicles may already be providing us with convenience, but in the not-so-distant future, connectivity will be used to drive domestic autonomous vehicles. In combination with cameras and long-distance radars, self-driving cars will be the norm in our cities.

Currently, autonomous vehicles are primarily being used for commercial purposes with Google’s Waymo taxi service being one of the better-known providers. Autonomous bus services are already being trialed in Singapore with plans to have autonomous buses in three districts from 2022. Likewise, in Germany, self-driving buses are being trialled in Berlin and Hamburg where passengers can use the service for free.

Self-driving cars have five levels of autonomy in regards to how much human involvement is required throughout a journey. Currently, there are no fully-autonomous vehicles on our

roads. However, the Insurance Information Institute reports that there will be 3.5 million self-driving vehicles on U.S. roads by 2025, and 4.5 million by 2030.

Car sharing is on the rise

Estimates suggest that by 2036, there will be approximately 2.8 billion vehicles on the planet, most of which will be privately owned. Once carsharing becomes a widespread mobility option, we’d expect to see a reduction in car ownership, improvements in traffic congestion and more available parking spaces in public areas.

As it stands, Western Europe and the US is leading the shared mobility markets with Asia experiencing the fastest growth in the field.

PWC’s research reveals that 47 percent of European consumers would consider giving up their own car in favor of an autonomous taxi service. And a study by Frost & Sullivan estimates that by 2025, 36 million people will use car sharing services, maintaining the market’s annual growth rate of 16.4 percent.

Electric vehicles will pave our future

PWC’s Digital Auto Report predicts that by 2030, 46 percent of new car registrations in China will be for electric vehicles. In Europe, the figure will be 40 percent, and in the US, it’ll be 35 percent. We’d expect this increasing adoption of electric vehicles to have a significant impact on reducing the amount carbon emissions that our vehicles generate.

With the European Union’s target to be free of combustion engine cars by 2050, we’re seeing an increasing number of European cities pushing for the use of electric vehicles. By 2025, only electric cars will be allowed to drive into Amsterdam and 100 percent of car sales in Norway will be electric. By 2030, all cars in Germany will be electric and the same target should be achieved in the UK by 2050.

There may still be a long way to go before all cars are electric, but these government commitments provide hopeful indications that we’ll all benefit from cleaner air in the future.