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Why micromobility is the future

August 26, 2022

The tipping point in electric passenger vehicle adoption occurred in the second half of 2020, when electric vehicle sales and entry grew in major markets despite the economic crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the McKinsey Center for Future Mobility. Experts on the theme suggest that transforming the way we move is possible through major changes in three areas: regulation, consumer behavior, and technology.

Respondents in the Mobility Ownership Consumer Survey were enthusiastic about the possibility of working by bicycle, moped, or e-kickscooter. Almost 70% stated that they were willing to use micromobility vehicles for their commute. The findings suggest that a growing number of workers may gravitate toward smaller, more environmentally friendly forms of transport as pandemic restrictions lift and offices reopen. 

The survey revealed, however, that micromobility uptake will be far from uniform because of location-specific factors. The willingness to use small vehicles is highest in countries with a long tradition of micromobility, such as Italy (81%) and China (86%). At the other end of the spectrum, only 60% of US respondents said they would consider micromobility, perhaps because they have traditionally relied on private cars or public transportation for their commutes, and the sight of someone weaving through traffic on a moped or scooter is relatively rare. How to encourage citizens and change the scenario in these places, then?

The research authors claim that there are implications for the players in the micromobility ecosystem and their prospects for success:

“When selecting a provider for shared micromobility services, cities should favor businesses that have a broad product portfolio and truly understand the local mobility needs. They can also promote the growth of micromobility by installing riding, parking, and charging infrastructure that integrates several micromobility modes and also facilitates transport for pedestrians and other travelers. Regulators can help by creating safe mobility corridors for all forms of transport”, the report says.

“Shared-mobility providers must understand local transportation habits for any city or region in which they wish to operate. (…) A combined fleet, in which vehicles have different maintenance requirements, charging needs, and life cycles, will also increase strategic and operational demands”.

Source: McKinsey | Forbes