By Andrew Sinagra
The International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is known for debuting revolutionary products in the field of technology. From the VCR in 1970 to the 3DTV in 2009, CES has been host to the unveiling of endless products that have redefined the world. Last week’s CES in Las Vegas may have set the bar for life-changing tech thanks to Mercedes-Benz.
The Mercedes-Benz F 015 Luxury in Motion research vehicle stunned those on the trade show floor with more than trend-leading technology. This vehicle provided a glimpse into the future with the advent of the autonomous vehicle. It is a self-navigating private luxury space containing a myriad of technological advancements that will not only change people’s relationship to the automobile but also lead the way in restructuring the transportation infrastructure.
Beyond the high-end finish of open-pore walnut wood and ice-white nappa leather, the command center of the F 015 Luxury in Motion is largely comprised of touch-sensitive displays throughout the vehicle which dynamically reconfigure the onscreen controls to the orientation and body position of each passenger in the cabin. Accompanying the interactive interior panels are gestural recognition and eye tracking technologies to make continuous communication with the vehicle an effortless task. In a trend sure to be seen by all autonomous vehicles of the future, the interior of the cabin is evenly spaced with four rotating lounge chairs allowing all passengers to swivel and face each other while the car is in motion. Facilitating the entrance into this reimagined interior are two doors which open in a suicide configuration, which Mercedes-Benz is calling their “saloon-style” doors.
The exterior design goes beyond the expectation of what a futuristic vehicle should be. Carbon fiber, aluminum, and high-strength steel provide smooth, flowing curves that sweep over the low nose and wrap tightly in the tail. LED lighting panels in the front and rear not only signal to the outside environment with varying color but also use pattern and digital text to indicate current operating conditions. A high-precision laser projection system adds an unprecedented level of interaction with the outside world, displaying information directly on the road ahead. Rounding out the vehicle, an F-CELL PLUG-IN HYBRID drive system is powering the drivetrain.
While reviewing any of the futuristic features of this concept car, Mercedes-Benz representatives are quick to point out that the F 015 Luxury in Motion is more than the compilation of its components. It is a glimpse into a redefined society where the automobile is not just a mode of transportation, but an extension of one’s living space.
WHY WE DIG IT:
>> Self-driving car lets you kick back & relax
>> Luxury club-inspired lighting
>> Interior screensaver-style animations
>> HD color touch screen door panels
>> Decent speed for a green car
>> Face-to-face seat configuration
>> Rear saloon-style doors
>> Talks to you like KITT