Elon Musk's Hyperloop rides might be free or very cheap

30 May 2015


Contrary to popular apprehensions, about rides on the hyperloop between San Francisco and Los Angeles being exorbitantly priced, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies' Dirk Ahlborn told CNBC the company was considering a business model that aped what was seen in free-to-play mobile games.

The CEO is mulling about making the travel itself free or at dirt cheap, with passengers charged for a series of as-yet undisclosed upgrades.

Meanwhile, the project moved a step closer to reality with the company signing a deal to acquire the land for five miles of test track in California's Quay Valley.

Construction would begin next year, with the first excursions expected by 2019.

Ahlborn also revealed that he was not taken up with hiking the Hyperloop's 750mph speed, but would rather use the facility to work out the best way to get passengers on and off the system.

He further wanted to assure worried future users that the sensation of being fired along a tube of compressed air by magnets at close to the speed of sound would not feel "weird."

Meanwhile, the first test track for Elon Musk's revolutionary $16-billion Hyperloop transportation system would be built in California as soon as next year.

The hyperloop essentially comprised a long tube that had had the air removed to create a vacuum.

The tube would be suspended off ground to protect against weather and earthquakes.

Passengers would sit in either individual or group pods, which would be accelerated with magnets.

Capsules carrying six to eight people would leave on the journey every 30 seconds, with tickets costing around $20 each way.

The cost of building a line from LA to San Francisco had been estimated at $16 billion, however, according to critics it would be nearer $100 billion.

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