Hopefully you’ll never require the services of an ambulance but, if you do, there may come a time in the distant future when the vehicle that arrives at the scene of an accident could fit through the front door of your house.
That’s because one of the latest concept ambulances takes the form of a modified Renault Twizy Cargo, itself a commercial version of the two-seater, battery-powered electric vehicle manufactured exclusively in Spain.
As such, a number of life-saving additions have been added to the mix. The Cargo version already ditches the second rear seat in favour of cargo space, and includes a lockable 180L boot than can open to 90 degrees, perfect for storing expensive medicines or equipment you wouldn’t want to go missing. Decked out in traditional ambulance livery, you’ll also discover blue lights and a siren onboard, although you’ll forgive 4×4 drivers if they can’t locate where the sound is coming from.
We know what you’re thinking – how could a tiny little car with room for one person and the potential to be blown away by a sufficiently powerful gust of wind ever prove itself useful as an ambulance?
When you look a little closer, however, it does begin to make a little sense. For starters, it’s great for the congested roads and lanes of major urban areas: measuring less than 2.4m long and 1.19m wide, the Twizy will squeeze through gaps that prove too much for regular-size Mercedes or Ford-based ambulances. The 17hp electric motor, which offers a range of 99km, is faster than on-foot response and carries a lot more than a bicycle. And all for exactly zero CO2 emissions. According to Renault, its main use will be to drive “up and down a busy coastal town’s beach front ensuring nobody has to wait to receive life-saving treatment,” presumably while the ordinary-sized version is pushing through traffic.
It might even provoke patients into a remarkable recovery once they see what’s buzzing towards them.