Dubai residents looking for a more environmentally friendly alternative to the SUVs and other fossil fuel-powered vehicles operating throughout the city can now call upon one of Uber’s 50 Tesla Model S and Model X vehicles.
Earlier this month, Uber announced the UberONE program for Dubai in partnership with the Dubai Taxi Corporation. This new app option gives riders the ability to request Teslas through Uber for about the same additional cost as the service’s UberBLACK tier. While only 50 Model S and Model Xs are currently available, The Associated Press reports that another 150 are set to be added in 2018 and 2019.
Dubai residents aren’t the first to have the option to summon Teslas through Uber. The UberOne service first launched in Madrid, Spain, in December.
Embracing Autonomous Technology
The Dubai Taxi Corporation wasn’t drawn to Teslas simply because the vehicles are all-electric — their future self-driving capabilities were also a factor as they align with the Dubai Future Foundation’s ultimate goals.
“By 2030, 25 percent of all transportation trips in Dubai will be smart and driverless. The strategy is projected to generate economic revenues and savings of up to Dh22 billion a year,” His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, said last April.
Dubai continues to solidify its place as a world leader in futuristic transportation. Last November, the city partnered with Virgin Hyperloop One to install a new hyperloop network that is expected to cut travel time from Dubai to Abu Dhabi down to 12 minutes. More recently, the government of Dubai announced a successful test of its autonomous flying taxi, meaning it can move forward with its plans for a drone taxi service.
Expect to see more innovative developments from the city as it attempts to overcome additional challenges of the modern world.
Disclosure: The Dubai Future Foundation works in collaboration with Futurism as a sponsor and does not hold a seat on our editorial board.