As transport solutions evolve to implement smarter, greener options, the way we travel between and around our cities is set to change in the coming years. A new generation of supersonic jets, two decades after the original Concorde stopped flying, is designed to usher in a more sustainable era of ultra-fast air travel. US-based company Boom Supersonic is leading the charge with Overture, pictured here in a rendering. Using "sustainable aviation fuels" (SAF), Boom says it plans to be carbon neutral by 2025, and offer passenger flights by 2029.
2022 Boom Supersonic
For shorter trips within our cities, many believe the future will take flight with Electric Vertical Take-off and Landing (eVOTL) vehicles. In November 2022, German company Volocopter successfully flew a crewed mission of its all-electric air taxi in regular air traffic conditions in Paris (pictured).
For coastal areas, REGENT is creating an entirely new mode of transportation called seaglider, which is part-boat, part-plane, and all-electric. The company's Viceroy, pictured here in a rendering, is a 12-passenger seaglider with a current range of 160 nautical miles. It's expected to enter service by 2025.
In September 2022, the world's first all-electric passenger commuter plane, named "Alice," successfully completed its first test flight, which lasted eight minutes and reached an altitude of 3,500 feet.
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When it comes to land-based transportation of the future, hyperloop technology is the talk of the town. These high-speed pods in pressurized tubes are expected to reach speeds over 700 miles per hour -- more than double the speed of current high-speed rail options including bullet trains or magnetic levitation (Maglev) trains. HyperloopTT (pictured here in a rendering), says it developed the world's first full-scale hyperloop test track.
If hyperloop is one buzzword, autonomous is another -- from cars to ferries, such as Zeabuz (pictured here in a rendering) in Norway. This small ferry is zero-emissions and self-driving, and could provide a more efficient alternative to land transport in some cities.
Zoox, tech giant Amazon's driverless transportation company, recently tested its autonomous, electric robotaxi on open public roads for the first time. The vehicle carries up to four passengers in seats that face each other, with no steering wheel or brake pedal.
Self-driving minibuses (pictured here during a trial run in July 2022) are already available to the public in Guangzhou, China. Created by WeRide, the Robobus -- like the Zoox robotaxi -- has no steering wheel, brake or accelerator.
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The microcar movement offers a smaller, greener future for urban driving. Tipping the scales at less than 800 pounds (compared to an average vehicle at 4,000 pounds), the three-wheeled Nimbus One, pictured, allows drivers to cut through traffic jams using its patented tilting technology.
E-bikes, scooters and now even cargo bikes are also helping travelers, commuters, and delivery drivers cover shorter distances in urban areas without needing a fossil fuel-powered vehicle. German company Onomotion created the E-Cargobike (pictured) to help replace conventional delivery vans.
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Here's what the future of transport could look like