In theory, it’s obvious: if you drive a plug-in hybrid, you simply switch to pure electric mode to reduce CO2 pollution. It makes sense, as an electric drive is very convenient and performs particularly well on short routes with frequent stop-and-go traffic.
But in reality, there is a problem: the drivers are only human. They often don’t think to switch the drive mode. In collaboration with Erasmus University Rotterdam and the city of Rotterdam, BMW investigated how to get plug-in hybrid drivers to switch to the electric engine at the right time. With by-laws? Bans? Or benefits? No. Gamification is the name of the solution that took to the streets in the 2019 Electric City Drive pilot project. The aim was to make the whole thing fun with elements of play. As Walt Disney’s Mary Poppins so eloquently put it, “in every job that must be done, there is an element of fun” – that is gamification in a nutshell.
Drivers of plug-in hybrid cars often forget to switch to e-mode.