Two prototypes of the Sky Pods, a self-driving taxi that moves on a hanging railway like a cable car, were displayed at the 7th World Government Summit in Dubai Sunday.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, vice-president and prime minister of the United Arab Emirates and ruler of Dubai, inspected the models created by the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) and Skyway Greentech Co. as a future transport mode in the country.
Sheikh Mohammed also attended a briefing on the transport system by Mattar Al Tayer, director-general and chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of the RTA.
The Sky Pods runs on five times less power than electric vehicles. The latest model was the third design.
The first model of the Sky Pods is the Unibike which moves on steel wheels on a hanging railway. An electric systems drives the pod which can be fitted with a power generator such as the Bicycle Dynamo. As such, it can be driven by the body mass of passengers on board.
The Unibike can accommodate two riders and travel at a speed of up to 150 km/h.
The second model of the Sky Pods is the Unicar which runs on an elevated network of cables connecting high-rise buildings. Each pod has a capacity of four to six seated riders and can travel also at a speed of 150 km/h.
The RTA is working to make 25 percent of total journeys in Dubai autonomous through the Sky Pods and other transit modes. It plans to announce the trial phase for the “Sky Pods” at the WGS.