Effective immediately, SSB Flex customers can also use the Stuttgart ridesharing service during weekday rush hour in the Stuttgart Vaihingen Synergy Park for five months. Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., the Flex vehicles will provide ridesharing services between the companies located there with their workplaces and the public transport stops in the districts of Vaihingen, Möhringen, Degerloch, Sillenbuch and Birkach/Plieningen. The expansion of the SSB and REACH NOW pilot beyond the off-peak hours into the peak hours will be realized through a cooperation with Mercedes-Benz AG. In the future, specific offers for employees in and around the Vaihingen Synergy Park will also be developed jointly. The technical implementation of the SSB Flex extension in the SSB Flex app will be carried out by REACH NOW.
The aim of the service expansion is to supplement local public transport in an efficient and sustainable way at peak times on a trial basis and to offer a comfortable alternative to private transport. The SSB and Mercedes-Benz AG want to gain insights into how a large industrial area with several thousand employees can be made accessible by means of innovative mobility concepts and thus make a contribution to reducing traffic.
Mercedes-Benz Vans is providing vehicles with fully electric drive for the new service: The eVito Tourer (power consumption combined: 24.2 – 20.2 kWh/100 km; CO2 emissions combined: 0 g/km) will supplement the SSB Flex fleet with two vehicles in the future. It stands for locally emission-free driving and low noise emissions and, thanks to its high level of comfort, is suitable for passengers and inner-city passenger transportation. This is intended to test the use of fully electric vehicles for on-demand operation and successively expand it in 2020.
SSB Flex is a so-called on-demand and ridesharing service in the Stuttgart city area. Users can hop on and off in the service area on demand and without a long way to the next stop and independent of the timetable. moovel contributes its innovative ridepooling technology, such as the algorithm behind the SSB Flex app, to the cooperation. It intelligently bundles users’ trip requests for so-called pooling and in this way enables the sharing of trips, so-called ridesharing.
Following the launch of SSB Flex in June 2018, this is the third expansion stage in the joint pilot. In the current trial phase, SSB Flex covers the entire Stuttgart urban area during off-peak hours from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. (Sunday to Thursday) and 6 p.m. to 4 a.m. (Friday to Saturday). In August 2019, the on-demand shuttle service was expanded from individual districts to the entire Stuttgart city area seven days a week and adapted in terms of operating hours. As a further development, additional mobility services will follow in the future in cooperation with Mercedes-Benz AG specifically for employees in the Vaihingen Synergy Park.
The Stuttgart Regional Council granted the necessary approval for the operation of SSB Flex in accordance with the passenger transport regulations, which also apply to local bus services.