Despite not being the headquarters to many major auto companies, Berlin may be moving toward an important mobility destination. Drivery, a mobility company, is establishing their new large hub within the city.
In the 1985 film Back to the Future, Doc Brown’s retrofitted gull-winged DeLorean car was powered by a “Mr Fusion” unit and could time-travel. Today, in Berlin’s vast new Drivery mobility hub, the team are working on making their own DeLorean car — one of only 6,000 still around — into an autonomous, electric E-Lorean.
While their ambitions are somewhat short of time-travel and fusion, Drivery Founder Timon Rupp says that the E-Lorean project represents just the kind of collaborative work and futuristic thinking that he wants to help foster in his vast new site for mobility tech which opened earlier this year.
Drivery is a 10,000 sqm space (the size of two football pitches) in the former Ullstein publishing house in Berlin. It is a maze of glass-walled studios, co-working offices, a garage for testing software in cars and a coding farm. So far, it has around 350 members and houses 40 startups, including Tier Mobility, Aipark, and Hella’s Fast Forward accelerator. Hella, a German car-parts group, also sponsors Drivery.
Berlin never had a car industry, which was always based elsewhere in Germany. But the Drivery hub is a further sign of how, in recent years, the city has become a powerful center for automotive innovation. The city has birthed dozens of new mobility startups, incubators and accelerators such as Porsche Digital Lab and Daimler Lab1886. At the same time, with a young and tech-savvy population, it has also become a testing ground for new types of mobility.
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