The Future of Driving with Sony Vision-S Concept Car

At this year’s Consumers Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Sony unveiled the next generation of electric cars with the Sony Vision-S.

Focusing heavily on providing sensor technology to the automotive industry, the Vision-S is an electric concept car which focuses on “safety, entertainment, and adaptability.

Image courtesy of Sony

 
As soon as one takes a seat inside the Vision-S they have entered into what Sony calls the ‘Safety Cocoon’ – a 360-degree panoramic view of the surroundings outside of the vehicle.
 

 
When Sony Electronics President, Mike Fasulo was interviewed about the vehicle recently, he said that:

“…there are 33 sensors inside and outside the car, and they are there for different purposes. On the outside, image sensors can detect things the human eye or the human being can’t, and prevent it. We call it a “Safety Cocoon” because it’s 360 degrees of protection. On the inside, maybe somebody is just tired or starting to nod off, it can detect movement of the individual, or lack thereof, and signal to the individual.”

In referencing that we are in the midst of a fourth industrial revolution, Fasulo was quick to point out the level of collaborative partnership that is happening in real time throughout the tech and automotive industries.

“…the greatest thing is to see industries working together. If you noticed, every time we had the opportunity, we talked about partnerships. It’s, ‘why don’t we work with partners to deliver this experience?’”
Mike Fasulo – TIME.

Existing in the automotive nether-world between a concept-car and a prototype, the Vision-S will not be available for purchase anytime soon. However, that doesn’t mean Sony can’t show off a little by envisioning what the future may hold for the automotive industry.
 

Image courtesy of Sony

 
Aside from the aspect of safety, the car offers a spectacular array of entertainment capabilities such as large screens which span the entire front dashboard of the vehicle. Both the driver and passenger have access to the vehicle’s media controls which include Sony movies, games, and vehicle settings.

Image courtesy of Sony

 
Drivers can ‘L-swipe’ and move whatever is on their screen over to the display of the passenger screen. Other trackpads allow both driver and passengers to tap through various menus and climate controls with multitouch gestures.

For those seating in the rear seats, fear not; Sony provides airplane-type seat-back touchscreens and has equipped each headrest with high-end speakers for independent viewing and listening.

 

Image courtesy of The Verge

 
Another impressive feature of the Vision-S is the placement of more than 10 Sony image camera sensors throughout the vehicle along with various other sensors using radar, ultrasonic, and light detection and ranging (LIDAR) technology.

In a recent interview, Yuhei Yabe, GM of Sony’s AI and Robotics group said:

“Through the process of building the prototype, we started to learn a lot about the architecture of the vehicle, we started to think about how our other technologies could be implemented in a vehicle.”
Yuhei Yabe – The Verge

In terms of driving performance, the car can go from 0 to 60 miles per hour in about 4.5 seconds due to two 200kW motors (one on each axle), and can max out at a top speed of 149 miles per hour (or 240 kilometres per hour).
 

Image courtesy of Sony

 
In regards to the vehicle’s driving range before charging, it is currently estimated that it can travel approximately 340 miles on a single charge.

The future is looking very bright with the hope of a thriving EV infrastructure and plenty of impressive new cars to choose from. The Sony Vision-S will hopefully be among the many choices for future consumers.

 

Specs

Passengers 4 seats with Individual Seat Speaker
Weight 5,180 lbs (2,350 kg)
Power 200 kW x 2 (Front / Rear)
Acceleration 4.8 s 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h)
Vmax 149 mph (240 km/h)
Axle system Double wishbone front and rear suspension / Air spring system
Drive All-Wheel Drive
Ground Clearance 120 mm~135 mm
Tire size 245/40R21 (Front) 275/35R21 (Rear)

 

Sony Vision-S Concept Car, Image courtesy of Sony


 
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