Press release

New mobility service for Hamburg

  •  Joint ride-pooling project by MOIA and HOCHBAHN
  • World’s first emission-free on-demand shuttle from 2018
  • Electric vehicle newly developed for Hamburg

Berlin/Hamburg, 7 June 2017 -MOIA, the mobility company in the Volkswagen Group (VW), and Hamburger Hochbahn AG (HOCHBAHN) are jointly working on the development of a new and environmentally friendly mobility service for Hamburg. As part of this project, an on-demand shuttle service with electric vehicles is set to go into operation in 2018. This service will supplement the public transport network and represent an attractive alternative to travelling by car.

Passengers will be able to book the service via the app on their smartphone by entering their location and destination. The MOIA shuttle will then fulfil the journey requests of passengers who are travelling in a similar direction. An algorithm will combine these requests, plan the route and calculate the journey duration and arrival times for each individual passenger. The planned integration into HOCHBAHN’s switchh platform will add a new and environmentally friendly shared mobility solution to the current range of car-sharing vehicles and rental bikes that can be booked online.

The new mobility service in Hamburg will be fully financed by MOIA and run using the company’s own vehicles and drivers. To this end, MOIA is currently developing a vehicle for up to six passengers that will be powered only by electricity and thus completely emission-free. The aim is to roll out the service with around 200 electric shuttle vehicles in Hamburg in 2018 following a successful test run. A further expansion of the fleet is planned for 2019. After its successful introduction in Hamburg, MOIA plans to launch the service in other cities

Ole Harms, MOIA’s CEO: “Last year, the Volkswagen Group and the city of Hamburg established the first strategic mobility partnership aimed at making urban mobility in 2|3 Hamburg safer, more environmentally friendly, more reliable and more efficient. MOIA’s on-demand shuttle will be an important milestone in this partnership.”

Robert Henrich, MOIA’s COO: “The MOIA on-demand shuttle service combines the flexibility of owning a car with the environmentally friendly aspect of public transport. This democratic and easily accessible mobility service will help to make day-to-day life easier for people living in the city and improve their quality of life. We are really excited about implementing this unique project with our partners in Hamburg and gaining some important insights into city transport in the future.”

Frank Horch, Hamburg’s Senator for Economy, Transport and Innovation: “With flexible and sustainable services such as this one, we are hoping to move closer to our goals of becoming a model city for modern urban mobility in Germany and hosting the 2021 ITS World Congress. This service is one of a whole series of new approaches from public transportation companies, taxi services and other service providers designed to take advantage of intelligent on-demand solutions to win more passengers. These new services help reduce noise and emissions on the streets and offer residents an additional mobility service in our city.”

Henrik Falk, Chairman of the HOCHBAHN Board of Management: “We will only persuade people to leave their cars at home if we provide a mobility solution that offers a real alternative in any situation. Ride sharing has the potential to become an attractive alternative to driving. By integrating the MOIA shuttle into our switchh platform, we will make this alternative easily accessible for passengers.” HOCHBAHN is expanding its switchh service, which has offered residents of Hamburg convenient access to complementary offers such as car sharing and rental bikes since 2013.

Studies show that in cities like Hamburg privately owned cars are not in use for around 95 per cent of the time (around 23 hours a day). It is in places like this that ride-pooling services can offer a real alternative in the future so that passengers do not need to return to using their cars. By combining individual journeys, the roads can be used more efficiently, which reduces emissions, noise and traffic – and makes a city a much nicer place to live in.

The project being undertaken by MOIA and HOCHBAHN is the result of a strategic 3|3 partnership that the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg entered into with the Volkswagen Group in August of last year. The two partners will work on innovative solutions for three years in order to make the city’s traffic cleaner, safer and more efficient – and make Hamburg a model city for urban mobility concepts.

About MOIA
MOIA is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Volkswagen Group. The company, based in Berlin, develops mobility services independently or in partnership with cities and their public transport operators. MOIA is currently focusing on two strategic business areas: ride hailing and ride pooling or the on-demand shuttle. MOIA has a strategic shareholding in the internationally successful ride-hailing service Gett, and is also currently establishing its own ride-pooling concept. Ride pooling involves combining the journeys of people with similar destinations, which reduces the amount of vehicles on the road and makes more efficient use of traffic networks.

Founded in 1911, Hamburger Hochbahn AG (HOCHBAHN) carries around 1.2 million passengers every day with its own fleet of more than 250 underground trains and 800 buses. As one of 34 partners in the Hamburg Public Transport Association (HVV), HOCHBAHN serves over 1,400 stops and is the largest transport company in the HVV network. At HOCHBAHN, around 5,000 employees work around the clock in order to guarantee an attractive public transport service and a comfortable and forward-looking mobility concept for Hamburg.


Christoph Ziegenmeyer
Head of Communications PR and Public Affairs
Jennifer Langfeldt
PR Manager