Elmo Group’s remote-controlled car gets permission to drive in Estonia

Elmo (Electric Mobility) was launched in 2013 as an Estonian state project: it is one of the first electric vehicle rental projects. In 2017, Elmo Rent is privatized by the current CEO, Enn Laansoo. In 2022, the French subsidiary Elmo Technologies is created: “Our technology was born out of a real need in our historic car-sharing business. We want to make the service more flexible and more comfortable for the end customer, to serve as many customers as possible with a minimum of resources”explains Kristina Kalda, France director of Elmo.

“Our technology is certified in Estonia and our cars are allowed to drive. Since 2020, we deliver the vehicle to the door of the customer who wishes it, which is expensive and inefficient because it requires the mobilization of two drivers and two vehicles. We started to develop the technology to make the process more efficient: it allows 75% savings on delivery. In addition, the technology enables the optimization of the car fleet and solves parking problems”she continues.

This year, next-generation mobility service provider Elmo passed the certification test by the Estonian Transport Administration. The company has received official permission to begin testing the remote control technology in traffic. The start-up now offers its services on the streets of Estonia.

The commissioning of the first 20 remote-controlled electric cars this year

The group’s objective is to put the first 20 remote-controlled electric cars into service this year. “In the fall of last year, we were the first in Estonia to launch a concept where a customer can freely order and rent a car wherever it suits them. It’s much more convenient than looking for an available car on the street, and it creates a significant competitive advantage for Elmo.”explains the CEO, Enn Lannsoo.

As part of the real-world trials, the company can already start providing short-term rental service with the first cars. Until the end of 2022, a safety driver will travel to the ordered destination. Its presence will be to provide safety, gain street driving experience and help refine the uniqueness and technology of the remote control. The car that passed the test was a first-generation electric Nissan Leaf equipped with remote control technology. At the same time, the next-generation electric Leaf has also been prepared for testing and preparations have started for the Renault Zoé, the first five of which will also be put into service immediately.

Optimistic about its ability to reach the French and German markets, the group aims to be the leading service provider through the sale of the technology license and the remote control service. “At present, there is still no remote control car in the world that serves customers in real traffic conditions. This technology has already generated a lot of interest and attention in France and Germany.”emphasizes Enn Laansoo.

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