Three concept cars as a manifesto of the brand and the vision of a future that is increasingly connected, sustainable and focused on “made to measure” design. Audi wanted to unveil the strategy for the next few years, confirming its intention to focus on technology to adapt to the profound revolution that the world of engines is going through and reach the goal already set: from 2026 all new models will be electric only.
To dictate the times are precisely the three unpublished showcars that the house of the Four Rings has announced in preview during the Audi TechTalk. Three projects developed by the Audi Design Centers in Ingolstadt, Malibu and Beijing using virtual reality and related viewers to collaborate in real time and exchange ideas, impressions and 3D models that are increasingly realistic and increasingly faithful to sketches. Coordinating everything, of course, was Marc Lichte, Head of Audi Design, who “had fun” imagining Audi Gransphere, Audi Skysphere and Audi Urbansphere.
The Grandsphere should make its debut at the Munich Motor Show in September: defined as “an avant-garde interpretation of the mobility of the luxury segment”, it anticipates a segment D full electric sportback in which the difference will be the habitability and modularity of the interiors.
The Skysphere should instead be unveiled at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, while the Urbansphere should be unveiled in all likelihood in 2022. A trio that stands on the two pillars on which Audi’s vision for the future rests: electrification and automation, with design as a trait d’union.
A design that is also different from the past, however, because it is tailor-made for those who use it: an “experience design” rather than a “car design”, thanks also to the space gained with electric motors that are more compact than the combustion ones, positioned in correspondence of the axles, and a battery compartment also rethought in a functional way.
A joy for the designers, who will be able to let creativity run wild – and the three concepts are a taste of it – focusing precisely on modularity. Having said goodbye to pedals and steering wheel with autonomous driving, the interiors will be able to change shape and adapt to the needs of travelers: “What are the customers’ needs? Do they want to work, read or sleep in the car? – Lichte asked himself, laying the foundations for the design of the future – For which intended use do we conceive the cars, long distances, use in the city or leisure in free time? What must the interiors look like to be functional? ”.
In short, it will no longer be the bodywork that will command, but the passenger compartment, which will increasingly resemble a space to live and experience (also thanks to autonomous driving) and less and less a mere passageway. To achieve the objectives, Audi has dedicated three offices to design – Ingolstadt, Beijing and Malibu, in fact – with 450 professionals from 25 countries committed to developing new ideas using increasingly innovative technologies.