Audi is changing the face of road traffic | Panda Anku

The way we travel is changing. It’s no longer just about getting from A to B; Now the journey is just as important. But what that journey looks like depends on how willing we are to challenge the way we think about getting around in our cities.

Audi has taken the initiative with the development of three concept cars*: the Audi skysphere concept*, the Audi grandsphere concept* and the Audi urbansphere concept*. They represent a vision of what future road traffic could look like thanks to innovations such as electrification and automated driving functions.

For Marc Lichte, Head of Design at Audi, these developments are real game changers. The space that used to be needed for large motors or gears can now be used to “create space for experiences”. In concrete terms, explains Lichte, this means a design “that treats the interior, the passenger compartment, as the heart and no longer subordinates the experience of the occupants to the requirements of the technology”.

The 3 concept cars from Audi

The Audi sphere* family shows Audi’s vision of future car driving

Audi

The three concept cars are “different interpretations” of what this future could look like, according to Audi brand boss Henrik Wenders. As different as they are, the vehicles are designed according to the same guiding principle: to combine progressive design with innovative technology and to harmonize form and function.

The roadster

interior of the audi skysphere concept car

With the Audi skysphere concept* you have the choice of driving yourself or being chauffeured automatically

Audi

For Wenders, the Audi skysphere concept* – a spectacular roadster with electric drive, a luxurious interior and the digital Audi ecosystem – is no longer just a car, but a “luxury-class adventure device”. One of its key features is the ability to drive yourself or be automatically chauffeured. “In the future, it will no longer just be about driving,” says Wenders, “but about the way on the road.”

Both driving experiences are made possible by an innovation reminiscent of science fiction – the adaptive wheelbase. The car can be lengthened or shortened by 25 cm at the push of a button. The steering wheel and pedals can be completely submerged and placed in an out of sight position, creating a spacious interior – which uses eucalyptus wood and a synthetically manufactured leather substitute, inspired by the Art Deco movement.

The limousine

Audi Grandsphere concept car with open doors

The Audi grandsphere concept* is a luxury class limousine with the highest level of comfort

Audi

Whether it’s a lounge, office, cinema or wellness area – the Audi grandsphere concept* is designed just the way its passengers want it. With its athletic lines, the vehicle does not look like a classic sedan, but its size (5.35 m long x 2 m wide x 1.39 m high) distinguishes it as an unmistakable “automobile luxury class” that combines the highest level of comfort with comprehensive Comfort combines diverse experiences on board. The automated driving function also opens up new dimensions – without any steering wheel, pedals or displays, the interior is transformed into a luxurious space that can be used as you wish. Video conferences, films, music – everything is seamlessly integrated into the digital ecosystem, menu options are selected by eye tracking and confirmed via touch-sensitive surfaces in the armrest or by hand gesture.

As the brand’s second concept car in the trilogy, the Audi grandsphere concept* occupies a special position. “It’s a real preview of a luxury sedan that will be on the road from the middle of the decade,” says Lichte. “Many of the technologies and design features presented here will be found in future Audis.”

The extended living space

a man and a woman sit in the back of the audi urbansphere concept car

The Audi urbansphere concept* is designed as a mobile lounge with high-tech features

Audi


The challenge of creating something radically new that doesn’t stray too far from Audi’s classic visual identity may sound like a daunting task, but that’s exactly what Lichte has achieved with the Audi urbansphere concept*. Developed at the Audi Design Center in Beijing in collaboration with a group of premium customers, it is designed for busy urban life.

At an impressive 5.51 m long, 2.01 m wide and 1.78 m high, the third electric concept car from Audi is also the largest model in the Audi sphere* family. Designed as a mobile living and working space, it focuses on the passenger experience, from the interior to the integrated functions and high-tech features.

And because privacy is becoming an increasingly valuable commodity in urban areas, the vehicle also has all kinds of retreat options, including individual monitors integrated into the backrests of the front seats, loudspeakers in each headrest and optional screens between the seat neighbors.

It is a design that puts people first – a guiding principle of Audi brand boss Wenders. And that’s just the beginning, he adds, because “the beauty of progress is that it doesn’t have a finish line. It’s progressing steadily.”

Find out more about Audi’s concept cars and visions here.

*The vehicles shown are concept vehicles and are not available as production models

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