Moving around a large factory can be exhausting.
BMW Group employees at plants in Spartanburg, Dingofing and sites such as the Research and Innovation Center in Munich, can walk up to 7 miles per day, according to Gabriel Nica, in an article she wrote on BMW’s blog.
To eliminate some of this traveling the BMW Group Research and Technology House in Garching conducted an analysis of the employees' needs and the environment. The solution was a Personal Mover, which is a one-person means of transport for covering short distances within an operating site.
“It had to be flexible, easy to maneuver, zippy, electric, extremely agile and tilt-proof – and, at the same time, suitable for carrying objects,” explains Richard Kamissek, head of the Operations Central Aftersales Logistics Network department. "The Personal Mover Concept can do all of this – and is also fun to drive. “
The body platform of the Personal Mover Concept is 60 centimeters wide and 80 centimeters long, so that a person can stand comfortably on it and still have room for larger, heavy objects. Two wheels at the rear corners of the platform and two support wheels at the front ensure that it does not tip over, even in tight bends. The two front support wheels rotate 360°, which greatly increases maneuverability. The handlebar and drive wheel are sunk into the middle of the body platform at the front.
The handlebar contains the entire electrical system, the battery and the drive wheel, and can be rotated 90° to the left and right, allowing the Personal Mover Concept to turn on the spot. A thumb throttle for regulating speed is integrated into the right grip. This control is used to start the Personal Mover Concept, switch the light on and off, select the driving mode or check battery status. For safety, there is also a bell for warning other employees. The left grip operates the brake and a dead man’s control.