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First two weeks of 'ZEM Goes USA Tour'

Blog 3 | TU/ecomotive student team


“Listening to the awful Dutch rap from Jens I understand that we are on the road and I immediately know I want this transportation to be over as soon as possible, I just want to drive on my own wheels again! But, to put everything in perspective, I have to say that the guys here treat me like their baby. I cannot wait for big groups of other people to see me in my full functionality. I know that many people talking about me and this makes me realize how special I really am. I just now start to see how wonderful it is that these engineers have hands-on built me in only 5 months.”




The entire group has been from home for two weeks already, some of them even 4 weeks. Every day that we spend in the USA makes it clearer why we are here. Our mission to make the automotive industry more sustainable makes so much sense here. Almost everybody here owns their own car and many of them own even more. Our taxi driver in San Francisco told us he even had 4 cars, just because he likes them.

When looking back at the unexpected situation of ZEM not arriving in time for the start of our tour on the west coast, I think the group became even more creative in its way of presenting ZEM and our student team. We thought of and made an entirely new presentation, 3D-printed mini ZEM’s and even made a life-size informative banner of ZEM to convince people of our message and to be able to present ZEM the most creative way.


“Without being able to show Zem in real life, we see how powerful our story alone really is already. It all comes down to the hot chocolate and whipped cream story.” – Louise de Laat

The many school visits, companies we got the chance to talk to, royal reception and visit from Queen Maxima and other  very interesting ministers opened our eyes on what is also still coming. We know the second part of our tour will be even busier. We will be going back to the west coast to visit many of the parties we have visited before, but this time with ZEM. 


One of the highlights this tour at the west coast was of course meeting the queen and the ministers at the Stanford University. On the east coast one of the highlights was meeting the ambassador of the Netherlands in Washington D.C. These were both meetings that were very valuable and also show the impact that ZEM can make and will keep on making for the rest of the tour.

Since we all (except for our planner Luuk) missed doing sports, we spent our two free days surfing in Santa Monica and hiking Yosemite National Park (or as Jia Ming calls it: Yosemieters). As can be seen in the pictures, this was a very exciting and sometimes even surprising experience, the squirrels became our best friends.

"Doing good by doing well" - Jeff Joyner

Our journey towards sustainable mobility now continues in Austin where we will be shaping the future of sustainable mobility together with Sorama and NXP!