Small, compact, affordable – ever more people are adopting mobile lifestyles and living in what are known as tiny houses. These miniature dwellings are an economical and environmentally friendly form of housing, and their close quarters contain everything that might be found in a conventional home. Their interiors can be configured in any number of new and flexible ways to meet the needs of their inhabitants. A fold-down bed turns the house into a bedroom, for example, while modular tables create a cozy kitchen and dining area. Tiny houses usually stand on trailers, and can be towed by cars if desired. Like the miniature house named “aVOID.” Italian architect Leonardo Di Chiara has been traveling through Europe in it since the spring of 2018, in a joint project with Volkswagen. His faithful companion is a Touareg, the Volkswagen model with the greatest towing power.
Mobile living concepts such as tiny houses are of interest to Volkswagen, especially in light of the opportunities that will be created by e-mobility and autonomous drive systems. If tiny houses can offer the greatest number of options in the smallest amount of space thanks to a focus on efficiency, how can cars of the future be designed to enable any number of rooms to be built on the same platform? In this interview Leonardo Di Chiara describes the mobile living concept behind his tiny house “aVOID,” talks about his travels through Europe, and explains why a nomadic lifestyle in a tiny home can also be a model for mobility in the future.