The pandemic has seen more and more people ditch the train and bus in favour of commuting via car.
There’s a growing demand for used cars amongst people seeking to avoid high public transport fees and crowded vehicles.
This trend inspired the team at Vertu Motors to imagine what iconic rail designs would look like if they were applied to cars. Vertu have created a series of mock-ups showing how cars could appear if the major rail companies entered the automobile market.
According to figures published by the BBC, the number of used car sales is 6.6% on pre-pandemic levels, with the used car market growing by 108.6% in Q2 2021.
The experts at Vertu Motors predict that used cars will continue to rise in popularity over coming years, due to factors such as the extra personal space provided by these second-hand vehicles.
Here’s what several road vehicles may look like if the rail companies ever do decide to start manufacturing their own cars.
Avanti West Coast
The Avanti West Coast car is as sporty as it is sleek. The designs imagine the car is a roomy affair offering ample space for those wishing to get to and from work in their own vehicles.
The Caledonian Sleeper is reimagined as a motorhome here. Reassuringly traditional, this comfortable vehicle could allow you to catch a few more minutes’ sleep on your way to work as long as someone else is behind the wheel.
Speedy and dependable, the Eurostar motor could be ideal for anyone facing a longer commute to work.
The iconic yellow Merseyrail design looks perfect applied to a road vehicle here. It’s easy to imagine thousands of Liverpudlians getting from A to B in this vehicle during rush hour.
Northern have long had a reputation for prioritising practicality over flashiness, and this mock-up remains true to this trend. The company’s trains have long been compared to buses due to their design.
The Southern Rail vehicle appears perfect not only for city-based commuting but for rural journeys too, making it ideal for commuters based in various cities, towns and villages.
Commuters wouldn’t struggle to get a seat or achieve ample legroom with the Thameslink motor. This spacious option would surely work perfectly as a road-based vehicle.
Transport for Wales
Blocky and futuristic, the Transport for Wales vehicle appears robust, dependable and ideal for commutes via the picturesque Welsh valleys.
The pandemic has undoubtedly delivered a big shift in commuter activity. Those going the extra mile to avoid catching the virus are snapping up used vehicles in droves, saving a sizable sum in bus and rail fares in the process. It’s not beyond the realms of possibility that vehicles closely resembling these mocked-up motors could become a reality in future years as rail companies diversify into other markets.
A Vertu spokesperson said: “The increase in used car sales during the pandemic has created a shift in the industry, with more of our customers preferring the ease, efficiency, and affordability of a second-hand vehicle.
“We are expecting there to be a significant continued tailwind on the market. Thankfully, as restrictions appear to be easing for the majority of the country, we are in a strong position to fulfil this increased demand with the more traditional – and favoured – in-person discussions for our customers.”
For further insights about Vertu Motors’ views on the automotive industry, visit the Vertu blog.