What may seem like science fiction to some has become reality for one European company. Induct Technology, an automotive and robotics company near Paris, visited the Upstate last week to share its latest addition to innovative transportation.
The company provided a demonstration for its self-driving vehicle at the Cottages at Brushy Creek in Greer as part of a search for U.S. partners in the technology.
Induct Technology launched Navia last month at the Consumer Electronics Show and won Popular Science’s Best of the Future Award.
Officials for the company say the vehicle is designed to shuttle people to and from their destinations and is the world’s first commercially available self-driving vehicle that relies solely on electricity.
Navia is self-charging and self-parking and can run 24 hours a day, while intelligently navigating congested streets with pedestrians or traffic without the use of a rail or designated path, officials said. The shuttle can be summoned by mobile phone, and users can tap its touchscreen to indicate destination.
Induct Technology has targeted hospitals, airports, college campuses, amusement parks and city centers as specific needs.
“Imagine a city without noisy, polluting buses, replaced by environmentally friendly, robotic shuttle buses that can be summoned by your mobile phone,” said Pierre Lefèvre, CEO of Induct. “Navia is completely self-driving, 100 percent electric, emission-free, safe and simple to use. It is the ideal solution for taking pedestrians that ‘last mile’ in city centers, industrial sites, theme parks, campuses, complexes and more.”