CES 2015: Mercedes showcases car of future
A car that can drive itself, a car that could well one day be your future home. That’s exactly what Mercedes says its car of the future would aim to be.
The company showcased a custom-designed vehicle for the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas and has called it the F 015 Luxury in Motion.
Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, introduced the concept and said the idea was to build a vehicle for the future when more than 270,000 new cars would be rolled out into the streets every single day, when cars would turn into mobile homes – little cocoons, when urbanisation will make time and space most precious aspects of our lives.
Mercedes-Benz Cars will “revolutionise the driverless experience,” said Zetsche.
“We want to make the option of driving without a driver a reality. We are simply not big into dreaming. We have been developing our vision of autonomous since the early nineties,” he said.
The concept car is about 5 metres long and 2 metres wide and has a wheelbase of 3610mm. The vehicle is designed in such a way as to maximize interior space and create freedom of movement.
The vehicle also has a variable seating system, with four rotating lounge chairs enabling passengers to sit face to face.
The driverless vehicle has an option where anyone in the car can take control of the steering.
The body is made of carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic and combined with aluminium and steel to reduce body weight.
The interiors is designed in such a way that the flowing is in transition and warm with organic materials such as open-pore walnut wood, which has been shaped to a three-dimensional veneer, soft ice-white nappa leather which contrasts with metal and glass surfaces creating a very technical feel.
The transition between the vehicle floor and the door panels matches that of the vehicle’s exterior. According to Mercedes, the transitions between organic, metal and synthetic materials is achieved using matrix graphics and is an attempt to create a feeling of bounteous space.
Windows and side panels transform into touch screens and syncs with your other smart devices.
The driverless car takes safety to the next level and even beams lights to indicate the car recognizes the pedestrian and even display a crosswalk on the street.
It even displays a warning sign alerting those behind the vehicle of a passenger crossing the street.
The electric hybrid system has a total range of 1,100 kilometres, including around 200 kilometres of battery-powered driving and around 900 kilometres on the electricity from the fuel cell.
This enables the F 015 Luxury in Motion to cover distances similar to those of a comparable diesel-engined car, but purely on electric power with zero local emissions.
“Anyone who focuses solely on the technology has not yet grasped how autonomous driving will change our society,” notes Zetsche. The car he points out is growing beyond its role as a mere means of transport and will ultimately become a mobile living space.
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