1. What does the name MOIA mean?
"MOIA" is a slightly modified word from Hindu-Sanskrit and means something like "magic". The name should be easy to remember and to pronounce as well as internationally understandable. But the reference to Volkswagen is not missing either: Turned upside down, the upside-down capital letters result in "VW", which is combined with IO. In IT, the abbreviation i/o stands for input/output. This underlines the DNA of MOIA as a technology company.
2. What is ridepooling?
Ridepooling is a on-demand-based mobility service where passengers, whose start and destination points are similar, share a vehicle. The fleet of a ridepooling service does not travel on fixed routes in the service area, but is deployed dynamically. An algorithm combines the trip requests made via the app, plans the routes of the individual vehicles and calculates the departure, journey and arrival times for each booking request. The algorithm assigns the requests to a new or existing trip and optimises the routes so that passengers only have to accept minor detours. Ridepooling is a mobility solution to avoid individual car traffic and to use road structure more efficiently.
3. What does MOIA set apart?
MOIA has not only created the vehicle, but also has developed a digital ecosystem for the entire value chain of ridepooling – from apps to algorithms to fleet management. MOIA has also built the necessary infrastructure for operating a ridepooling service. The young company has always taken a partnership approach: MOIA does not come to the cities with a product designed in laboratories, but cooperates with citizens – e.g. in co-creation processes, transport operators and relevant authorities. MOIA claims to offer a service that can compete with the private car in terms of convenience and availability. The ridepooling service is an affordable, convenient and environmentally friendly way to get around the city. MOIA sees itself as a part of this shift in transportation. We, along with other mobility providers, strive to achieve an even broader turnaround in urban mobility. A well-developed local public transport system is the backbone of urban mobility, which is enhanced by ridepooling.
4. What does the vehicle make special?
The golden-yellow MOIA +6 is the first fully electric vehicle designed and engineered specifically for ridepooling. Together with Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles and Volkswagen Osnabrück the MOIA +6 was developed and built in just ten months. The Volkswagen e-Crafter served as a technical basis. The interior of the vehicle is spacious with free-standing seats for six passengers. An automatic door and a door handle make entering and exiting the vehicle simple. Furthermore, the MOIA +6 includes a storage area for hand luggage, individually operated reading lamps, USB ports for charging smartphones and fast Wi-Fi. The range is over 300 km according to the new WLTP standard. By using high-power charging technology and the latest battery generation, the battery charges to 80 percent in about 30 minutes.
5. How can you book a ride?
The booking and payment process takes place via the MOIA app. The customer sends a trip request by entering the desired starting and destination point as well as the number of passengers and the time frame. A dynamic pooling algorithm quickly assigns the request to an existing or new ride. The MOIA app informs the customer about the price, the pick-up point for a MOIA and a time frame. The customer is picked up and transported together with others on a completely dynamic route. The fares are between public transport and taxi.
6. Where and how are the vehicles charged?
MOIA installed charging stations with direct current (DC) and alternating current (AC) at the company’s hubs. There are 33 AC charging stations for 66 charging points and 12 high power charging (HPC) stations at the biggest hub in Hamburg alone. Not only the vehicles with the fully electric drivetrain are environmentally friendly but also the required electricity: MOIA only uses green electricity for charging. In addition to the hubs distributed across the city MOIA is equipped with decentralized DC charging points to ensure a good distribution of the fleet in the service area and thus efficient operation. The decentralized charging infrastructure was partly realized with private partners and will be expanded in the future.
7. What are MOIA’s future plans?
MOIA’s future is shaped by autonomous driving. For MOIA as mobility provider and fleet operator, autonomous driving is an important element for the further development of the business model. With AD technology, we can align on-demand mobility concepts even more flexibly with customer needs in the future and thus make them accessible to more people. This includes transport in peripheral locations and/or at peak times, for example. Great potential of the technology lies in ridepooling: lower traffic volume, higher traffic safety, and thus making cities more liveable.