Volkswagen and Qatar have entered into an agreement that will bring to the capital of the country a fleet of electric and autonomous vehicles before 2023. In all there will be 35 ID Buzz vehicles with a capacity of four passengers each, which will make fixed routes in the Westbay region. The German manufacturer will, in partnership with Audi, operate the software necessary to manage the service.
Trials will start in 2020 and the first experimental trips will start a year later.
Although autonomous transport services already exist in some cities, none of them have to date this scale. Volkswagen's support also increases the relevance of the initiative as major automotive brands have not supported the deployment of such fleets in the real world.
The success of this network can help the brand gain ground in the market, and more specifically in the public transport segment. For now, Doha is the ideal city to test the concept, as the roads are relatively new and the weather does not create major problems for vehicle traffic.
In 2020 we will see another fire test, this time in Tokyo, during the next edition of the Olympic Games, where several electric shuttles should be used to transport staff and public between strategic points of the event.