Safety and environmentally friendly mobility
In Vietnam and Cambodia, there are many people who sell a large amount of vegetables, fruits and fresh flowers on their bicycles. And they run surprisingly straight, despite having a lot of luggage. They have high driving skills, but they are by no means safe. A new safer mobility was designed for such Southeast Asian bicycle merchants.
The new mobility is the idea that was ranked second in the “2020 Michelin Challenge Design” held by Michelin. The theme of this competition, which was the 20th time this year, was “Upcycle”. Participants were asked to clarify the role of design in sustainable mobility and to visually convey how recycled design enhances social, environmental or economic value. Applications were submitted from all over the world, and designers from global automobile manufacturers such as Hyundai, Honda, and BMW judged.
The second-ranked mobility for Southeast Asia, named “FarGO,” was designed by two graduate students at the Royal College of Art in London. They focused on the fact that Vietnamese and Cambodian bicycle merchants are struggling with heavy luggage and limited cargo space. And they designed a power-assisted bicycle that can withstand loads and carry luggage with easy operation.
“FarGO” has two features. First of all, the front part of the bicycle is equipped with a storage box for storing products such as vegetables and fruits. This storage box is intended to be made from discarded plastic. Secondly, the on-board electric motor provides power assist on slopes and is charged when it is not operating. Electric motors are intended for the reuse of used electric vehicle motors and batteries. In addition, they also considered improving the local economy by setting affordable prices for local residents in Vietnam and Cambodia to purchase “FarGO” and providing efficient mobility to the local community.
“FarGO” is still in the conceptual stage, but when it is realized, bicycle marchants will be able to carry more products than conventional bicycles, which will generate an income gain. We hope that safety, security, and environmentally friendly mobility will spread around the world in consideration of the cultural characteristics of the country.