HOLON and Rhein-Main-Verkehrsverbund cooperate on autonomous mobility

Paderborn, April 8, 2024. HOLON, a subsidiary of the BENTELER Group, and the Rhein-Main-Verkehrsverbund (RMV) are advancing autonomous mobility in local public transport: both companies aim to integrate autonomous shuttles into the RMV. Representatives from both sides recently signed a joint memorandum of understanding to this end.

HOLON CEO Dr. Henning von Watzdorf: “Our common goal is to fully exploit the potential of autonomous vehicles in local public transport. This is important to us as a vehicle manufacturer, and RMV as one of the largest transport associations in Germany. We both want to offer passengers an efficient, safe and sustainable autonomous transport solution. That’s why we will identify and use the synergies between our organizations in the future.”

RMV Managing Director Prof. Knut Ringat: “At RMV, we have been testing autonomous mobility in local public transport in various projects since 2019. Together with HOLON, we are aiming for the next milestone, the integration of autonomous vehicles in regular operations. Adding autonomous mobility to the transport mix will make travel services more dependable in times of an ongoing shortage of skilled workers. It will also enable us to offer our passengers even more flexible and frequent services in future.”

Focus on exchanging knowledge

The future cooperation will focus on the regular exchange of knowledge between the companies in order to jointly master the challenges of autonomous vehicle use. Both parties intend to complement existing transportation services by integrating autonomous vehicles. To this end, new standards and technologies for the connectivity of vehicles and infrastructures will be developed and innovative solutions for accessing and paying for mobility services driven forward.

The vehicles are designed for barrier-free accessibility to meet the needs of people with limited mobility. Underlining this, Dr. Henning von Watzdorf explained: “HOLON wants to make mobility accessible to everyone. The Mover is therefore designed to be inclusive: It’s equipped with twin electrically operated sliding doors with light barriers and an automatic ramp. It can also be lowered to facilitate easier entry. For the visually handicapped, additional support through Braille and an audiovisual guide during the journey is available.”

HOLON Mover to be available in central Germany from 2026

This is not the first cooperation with a major German public transport association for HOLON. The company has already announced the start of a pilot project in northern Germany, where it is cooperating with Hamburger Hochbahn. Now the mobility of the future will also be shaped in the middle of the country. From 2026, several vehicles from HOLON shall be available for integration in test operation, subject to funding and contract placement. To this end, the memorandum of understanding also covers infrastructure as well as homologation and licensing procedures.

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