Mercedes-Benz has just unveiled a brand-new concept car at CES 2020, dubbed the VISION AVTR inspired by James Cameron’s “Avatar” movie of yesteryear. According to Mercedes the vehicle is envisioned to represent themes of ecologically-sound mobility and the interaction of the passenger and their vehicle, it also uses new green materials.
At first glance, the back of the vehicle has 33 multi-directionally movable “surface elements”, as Mercedes describes them. It’s highly reminiscent of a reptile’s scales, they flutter and ripple to add gestural communication to the vehicle. The automaker also foresees them as helping to add power to the EV.
Not only are Mercedes conscious about the earth, but the energy powering the VISION AVTR will be kept in a graphene-based organic battery cell, which means it will be completely rare earth and metal free. Step inside the vehicle and you’ll find that Mercedes has used vegan DINAMIC leather – a microfiber that promises environmental sustainability through its production cycle – for the trim on the seats, while the floor uses Karuun wood. A fast-growing and environmentally stable rattan, which is garnered in Indonesia.
The interface inside the vehicle is quite unique. Instead of a steering wheel, the Vision AVTR has a control stick slash pad slash patch in the centre console for moving the car about. When you place your hand over it, it raises up, and pushing it in the direction you want to go controls the car. The car does have a fully autonomous mode, in which the control surface will drop back into the console. When the control is at half height, the car still drives autonomously, but you can adjust the speed. As for the infotainment system, icons representing functions are projected onto your hand when you raise it up. You then select functions using hand gestures.
By now you’re probably wondering whether any of this headed to production and when it’ll reach out market. The answer is probably not, at least not in this form.
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