Finnish clean energy company Fortum has come up with a rocking new idea to showcase the clean and quiet face of electric vehicles, by asking passengers to sing along to tunes in return for a free ride in a shuttle.
If at first images of environmentally-friendly Finnish hipsters singing karaoke and zipping around Helsinki’s streets springs to mind, think again.
First, it will be tested out on festival goers at Finland’s Ruisrock Festival this weekend.
The drivers of Fortum’s Singalong Shuttle, as it is called, are under strict instruction to refuse payment for trips around the festival by cash or credit card.
Instead, the occupants get to select a song on the shuttle’s tablet and sing along karaoke-style. If they stop, the trip grinds to a silent halt.
The pilot is inspired by The Late Late Show’s James Corden’s viral ‘Carpool Karaoke’ segment, in which he invites celebrity musicians to join him for a ride around Los Angeles to sing songs.
With the intention of encouraging festival goers to participate in a sustainable, clean energy future, the energy provider has sponsored a series of electric vehicles made by BMW to transform them into a fleet of sustainable singing shuttles.
“With Singalong Shuttle we want to show people in a joyful way how comfortable and easy it is to drive an electric car,” says Fortum’s Brand ManagerJussi Mälkiä.
“The silent electric cars make it possible to enjoy singing without background noise and emissions,” he continues.
Fortum, who provide clean energy in Scandinavia, Russia, Eastern Europe and even India, are on a mission to reshape the energy landscape.
In addition to building solar farms in India, and participating in the electric aviation discussion in Finland, they have also launched EV charging platform Fortum Charge & Drive, providing one of the largest charging networks in the Nordic region with over 2000 chargers to date.
Could singing shuttles be the next eco-friendly initiative at big Australian festivals such as Byron Bay’s Splendour in the Grass or Bluesfest? We can only hope, come rain (which it usually does) or shine.
Bridie Schmidt is associate editor for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She has been writing about electric vehicles since 2018, and has a keen interest in the role that zero-emissions transport has to play in sustainability. She has participated in podcasts such as Download This Show with Marc Fennell and Shirtloads of Science with Karl Kruszelnicki and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum. Bridie also owns a Tesla Model 3 and has it available for hire on evee.com.au.