NIO EXT Extended Mobility by Miguel Angel Garcia Londono, Columbia

2019: Inspiring Mobility


Miguel Angel Garcia Londono
Medellin, Colombia
Pforzheim University


The emotional need I chose for this project was FREEDOM.

The urbanization trend in megacities will require that cities start implementing certain changes in mobility that will result in a way in restrictions for people and car manufacturers as well. There will be areas in the city where only vehicles with specific requirements will be allowed to drive through. In this scenario, I imagine Berlin as one of these cities, and it will be split into three main areas: an auto-free zone, a second zone for small vehicles only and third zone free of restrictions.

Based on this, the NIO EXT is a vehicle with two autonomous components. The front component is a compact city unit for 2 people that will give passengers the freedom to travel in the narrow spaces of a dense city and will eventually help reduce traffic congestion in the most populated city in Germany. The second component, the extension, will provide extra performance and battery range along the interurban stretch of the road network. Once the city unit leaves the inner city center, the extension comes autonomously to meet with it and attaches to it (in motion), and once the next urban center is reached, the extension detaches from the city unit so it can continue its journey in a dense surrounding again.

This concept invokes the emotion of FREEDOM especially in Berlin for many reasons. First of all, it will provide flexibility to the customers to travel freely through a city that is very dense in population. And additionally, with the extension, the combined vehicle will allow people to travel between cities which is something a small city vehicle wouldn’t be able to achieve (mainly due to battery size and range). In this case, the NIO EXT is not only meant to drive in the city but also between cities in a much more efficient way, a faster way, reducing commute time. This is especially valuable for a city like Berlin and would be one of the reasons users would be inclined to choose this mobility system. Many people that live in Berlin, work outside of Berlin, some of them even 1 to 2-hour drive in a conventional transportation option like a car or a train, and they have to go through exhaustingly long journeys every single day just so that they can live in one of the coolest cities. The NIO EXT, will provide them with the perfect alternative to live in their favorite city and reduce travel time significantly.

Another reason why the NIO EXT invokes FREEDOM is because it frees people from the main worry or concern when it comes to electric vehicles: charging, or refueling the battery. The compact city unit will have a very small battery that will constantly recharge via dynamic wireless charging as it drives through the second zone of the city via, and therefore there is no need to worry about this until you’re back home. And in long distance traveling (when people work in a different city for instance), the extension will provide the extra battery power that is needed, and even if the distance to be traveled is too long, a succession of extensions will supply the vehicle with enough power throughout the whole journey. This system creates, in a way, an endless cycle of energy for the vehicle offering a hassle-free mobility alternative when it comes to charging.

The vehicle will cater to specific needs through subscription-based plans that will create a much more tailored mobility experience providing an excellent alternative according to how far outside the city users have to travel on a daily basis. There will be 3 plans, where the main differentiating factor will be the performance of the extension: the better the plan, the higher the performance of the extension, and therefore, the more users can shorten commute time.

And the final reason why this vehicle might be appealing to Berliners is the fact that Germany as a whole is a very environmentally aware country, and Berlin specifically leads the way undoubtedly, because of the mindset and mentality of their residents. In this way, the NIO EXT works around the fact that a physical component in a car should only be present when needed. Why drive around in a pick-up truck inside the city when the bed of the truck is empty most of the time, or a 7 seater SUV when there is usually only one passenger in the car? Berlin is a city that would easily adopt a new mobility alternative with a reduced footprint and a much more efficient use of energy and energy saving (or in other words, less waste).


Miguel Angel, recently completed a masters in Transportation Design at Pforzheim University, having previously obtained his degree in Product Design Engineering from Universidad EAFIT, in his home city of Medellin, Colombia. He also took part in a one-year exchange program to study Automotive Design at Coventry University, UK.

Miguel Angel has gathered a vast international experience through multiple internships within the automotive industry, at companies such as Volkswagen, Smart/Mercedes-Benz, Peugeot, and Nio. This is in addition to the exposure he gained through contact with designers from Land-Rover, Mercedes-Benz, Opel & Maserati whilst studying at Coventry & Pforzheim.

As a designer, he likes to focus on exploring design solutions that challenge the status quo of the automotive world of today, in order to provide innovation for future mobility.