Escape by Simon Kafmann, Italy

2019: Inspiring Mobility


Simon Kafmann
Caldaro, Italy
Umea University, Master’s Program Transportation Design


FREEDOM – New York

“ESCAPE” is an autonomous renting minivan which offers space for several people and their equipment. The car is based on a modular platform which can be customised beforehand by the customer itself. Be it for a mountain bike tour at the weekend, hiking trip with the family or a chill-out trip with friends. At this way then costumers get the best experience according to their transaction and plans.


It´s all about Experience! – How can autonomous cars generate additional benefits to meet the desires of the next generations?

Autonomy will be the biggest change in the evolution of the car since it has been invented. It allows not only new use cases but also new driving experiences. In addition, the relationship between cars and people is changing. Status is no longer defined by possession but by experiences. Future cars will get new applications to enable and enrich those experiences.

Our society is in constant change. New technologies are developing rapidly fast and are increasingly affecting our daily lives. Cities are getting bigger and grow together more often, which causes more than 65% of the world’s population will live in cities by 2035. This fact will inevitably lead to a new sort of mobility. Existing autonomous-sharing-concepts have the overall the same approach. They are mainly taxis focusing on the transport of people from A to B and the entertainment, which can be offered during short trips in cities and suburbs. But no concept has the activities like biking, skiing or traveling in focus. Therefore, Escape opens a new segment focusing on individuality for middle to long distance riding.


Via the app the costumer can choose the date and the pick up address+destination. He can choose the required modules (interior and backpack modules) in a library. Depending on the selected modules the price is calculated. By accepting, the platform is built up at a service center, which a strategically spread. When the car is ready, it drives autonomously to the destination and picks up its passengers. After the journey the car drives to the service center where it is cleaned and inspected.


Simon Kafmann, 22, is an Italian design student. After his Bachelor degree in product design at FH Joanneum in Graz (Austria) he continued his studies in the Master Programme of Fine Arts in Transportation Design at Umeå (Sweden), where he is currently in the final year before graduation.

Fascinated by Italian sport cars, his interest in car design started already at young age. With his projects done during his studies and internships, he is seeking for innovation and new solutions to shape the future in the rapidly changing mobility industry.

During his internships at MINI (interior), BMW (exterior) and VOLVO (interior) he could gather a lot of experience in the automotive industry and was awarded at the “Festival Automobile International” with the 1st price of the “Young Designer Award” by BMW in 2019 in the exterior design category.