Gorgeous new Audi Grandsphere concept is a private jet for the road
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INGOLSTADT, GERMANY - Audi has whipped the covers off its new Grandsphere concept car ahead of its public debut at the IAA show in Munich next week. Following hot on the heels of the shape-shifting Skysphere design study that was unveiled in August, the Audi Grandsphere concept is the second in a series of three ‘sphere’ concept cars that the German carmaker has created.
The Audi Grandsphere concept was designed to be something of a “private jet for the road” and to that end the 5.35-metre-long grand saloon has a large, lounge-like cabin and Level 4 autonomous driving capability.
Although the vehicle can be driven when so desired, in autonomous mode the steering wheel, pedals and driving displays fold away to create something more akin to a living space, with more room, freer views and access to all the functions of the car’s “holistic digital ecosystem”.
Here we’re talking of a range of different experiences, from communication and work-oriented modes to pure relaxation. The car offers an extensive suite of digital services and you can even ask it to design a spectacular scenic route for you and find interesting places on the way.
You won’t find any screens in this car, as the system instead projects graphics and information onto the wooden surface of the dashboard.
The Audi Grandsphere concept is able to identify its occupants before they even try to enter the vehicle, through a ‘pathway identification’ system, and not only does it open the doors automatically, but it also welcomes them with individually staged displays and ambient light.
If you were reading a particular piece of news before entering the car, it picks up on that too and displays it on the projection surface. Further to that, the vehicle provides its occupants with information about their current destination, in addition to a wide range of digital services.
As you would expect, the Audi Grandsphere concept is fully-electric, with a motor on each axle working together to deliver system outputs of 530kW and 960Nm.
The concept car is built around the VW Group’s new PPE platform for premium electric vehicles, which will also underpin the upcoming Audi A6 e-tron. It comes with an 800 volt electrical architecture, which allows the vehicle to be charged with enough electricity to cover 750km. When fully charged the battery allows for a range of more than 750km, Audi claims.
As enticing as it all seems, the Audi Grandsphere is purely a concept car and won’t make it to production any time soon, however you can expect it to influence the German brand’s next generation of large electric saloons.