eVersum & Oxa
As part of a partnership that the parties believe will revolutionise the transportation sector, autonomous vehicle software developer Oxa and electric vehicle provider eVersum have teamed up to design, develop and produce shared autonomous passenger vehicles that will be offered to public transport operators in Europe and the US.
Announced at this year’s Busworld 2023 Europe exhibition, the partnership will see the launch of eShuttle, an autonomous city car based on eVersum’s autonomous-ready electric-base vehicles featuring Oxa Driver, Oxa’s autonomy software, along with integrated sensors and computing technology.
With engineering and manufacturing facilities in Austria, Slovenia and the UK, eVersum specialises in the design, development and production of electric commercial vehicles and platforms, with a primary focus on passenger transport solutions. Through the incorporation of technologies such as x-by-wire, its platforms are designed to be autonomous driving-ready.
Founded nine years ago, Oxa claims to be accelerating the current transition to self-driving technology. It has developed software for businesses with transportation needs, ranging from a virtual testing environment to the software driving the vehicles and cloud-based management tools.
With this launch, the firms claim to be addressing a growing need for better, more flexible and low-carbon public transport options, particularly as urban populations grow and road congestion intensifies. They add that the high cost of maintaining multi-route transit services combined with persistent driver shortages can lead to service cuts, which affect communities and vulnerable groups including the elderly and disabled.
By adopting autonomous eShuttles – a low-noise, zero-emission electric vehicle designed for on-road and public transport applications – Oxa and eVersum are confident that transit operators will be able to sustain routes and timetables that are increasingly cost-prohibitive, while also addressing congestion and emissions reduction targets.
The eShuttle is designed to carry up to 20 seated passengers and has capacity for a maximum of 50 people with standing. It offers passenger comforts such as kneeling-stop capabilities and flexible seating, as well as latest-generation information system options to meet today’s needs of transit operators.
By combining their strengths, Oxa and eVersum are aiming to create a turnkey shuttle solution that offers safe, efficient and reliable shared autonomous transportation options for the future, while enabling transit operators to reduce costs, improve safety and extend services to previously inaccessible routes. They are working towards an initial deployment of eShuttles featuring Oxa Driver software in the UK, set to be announced later in 2023, which will mark a milestone achievement for the country’s automotive economy.
“We are thrilled to be working with eVersum to deploy safe, secure and efficient autonomy where it is needed most,” said Ox CEO Gavin Jackson. “At Oxa, we believe next-generation shuttling can deliver vital benefits to cities and industries, and this partnership represents a momentous step forward for the future of self-driving technology. Together, we will transform the autonomous vehicle market with cost-effective, low-carbon turnkey solutions.”
Holger Postl, CEO of eVersum, said: “As a leading specialist and OEM dedicated to electric commercial vehicles, eVersum has invested years in rigorous research and development, and welcomes the opportunity to collaborate with AD-pioneer, Oxa, as we jointly embark on this exciting journey into the future of mobility. We’re delighted to have found a partner who aligns with our visions and priorities that include the real-life deployment of AD-shuttles in public transport operations.”
Read more about autonomous vehicles
- UK government pumps £18.5m into autonomous vehicles: Funding is part of a £50m pot going to 30 different ‘cutting-edge’ manufacturing projects, with the aim of boosting green technology innovation.
- Oxa strengthens leadership team to drive next phase of autonomous vehicle growth: Autonomous vehicle software developer bolsters executive leadership team with new chief product engineering officer and chief people officer.
- Tesla full self-drive software and autonomous vehicle safety: The automaker gave North American users access to its full self-driving system in 2022. However, critics say it fails to perform basic tasks and could lead to catastrophic results.