The concept of adding a trailer to a car is not exactly new but traditional solutions require a fixed coupling, extended mirrors and in many countries a special license. A Swiss car designer changes the game with a plug-in solution.
The single-axle »backpacks on wheels« serve a variety of purposes depending on the requirements of the day. They may also solve the much-discussed operating range problem of electric vehicles. The core idea: neither unneeded space nor superfluous weight is carried along if they are not really needed.
Any electric city car could serve as the basis for »Dock+Go«. For demonstration purposes, Rinspeed founder Mr. Rinderknecht turned his attention to the two-seated »Smart«. A wide variety of »packs« turn the electric-powered mini car into an ideal pizza delivery vehicle – complete with an integrated heat box. For craftsmen there is a toolbox pack with well-organized spaces for every tool. And after the day’s work is done the shared or owned camping, golf, skiing, beach or party pack is docked to the rear of the mini-mobile.
An »energy pack« with a combustion engine or range extender, packed with batteries or powered by a fuel cell, provides the decisive added range for reaching more distant destinations. The docked third axle drives the rotating second axle and thus recharges the on-board battery of the city car. And thus the first Vario-Hybrid, as Mr. Rinderknecht refers to his range donor, is born.