Groundbreaking golf-cart project developing in Nuneaton
A groundbreaking design for a semi-autonomous luxury golf cart is being developed by Baro Vehicles based at MIRA Technology Park in Nuneaton.
And the project is a perfect example of overseas expertise blossoming in Warwickshire after chief executive and co-founder Gabriel Giani decided the county was the perfect location in which to harness the product's potential.
Mr Giani originally started his idea in his home country of Argentina where he successfully built the first prototype.
He then made the decision to set up in the UK to access the wealth of automotive expertise and quality of engineering here.
Mr Giani particularly liked the look of what Warwickshire has to offer so contacted Warwickshire County Council’s Inward Investment team who got busy helping him to identify suitable premises and the right environment for a base.
MIRA Technology Park is a dedicated automotive campus where companies can carry out and test R&D projects and collaborate on-site. The Inward Investment team also helped Baro connect to new networks, local universities and support providers to get the project underway.
"It was great that Gabriel felt that Warwickshire had everything that his business needed as a base and we were delighted to be able to help," said one of the county council's Inward Investment Officers, Stephanie Williams.
"The project is a very exciting one and there was a lot we could do to help find the best location and also put Gabriel in touch of many useful local contacts."
Baro Vehicles has just begun manufacturing the second prototype, Baro One, the first pre-series for customers in the UK, and other local businesses are already involved. Nuneaton-based VCS Manufacturing Ltd has been selected to design and develop the tooling and chassis. The strategic partner has been selected for their excellence in design, quality and services.
The golf cart will be of a unique design with no steering wheel or pedals, but fully controlled by an on-board tablet and computer. A joystick will be installed to allow the user to gain control of the cart where required.
The system will follow a predetermined route, avoid objects and allow the user to start adopting autonomy technology before it is fully deployed on the roads.
The company’s vision is to manufacture intelligent golf carts which provide a supreme luxury experience for large markets such as the US. In the future the vehicle could be adapted to use in airports and big cities to support key factors such as energy-efficiency, reduce human error and traffic congestion.