Sony Unveils 7-Seater Electric SUV Concept & Ambitious Mobility Division
Comes packed with 40 sensors, 5G and a gaming and entertainment experience.
At CES 2022, Sony took the wraps off a cutting edge piece of technology that you can’t buy, and no we’re not talking about the PS5. The Japanese company showcased the all-new Vision S prototype electric concept car along with the Vision-S SUV prototype.
Both prototypes feature a sleek, futuristic design with smooth lines all around. A characteristic that is far too familiar with electric cars. However, eagle-eyed enthusiasts might notice a slight resemblance to the Porsche fleet.
During the unveil, Sony’s Chairman, President and CEO Kenichiro Yoshida, added that the Vision-S was developed on the foundation of safety, adaptability and entertainment.
Starting with the former, the 7-seater Vision-S SUV concept hosts a total of 40 sensors, spread across inside and outside the car. These include lidar, radar, ultrasonic, and high-resolution, high-dynamic-range cameras which work in unison to provide 360-degree coverage of the car’s exterior. Along with it, they will also aid in offering automatic lane changing, automatic parking and smart cruise control.
Get behind the wheel and Sony’s three-dimensional sensors will also help in monitoring driver’s fatigue, by analysing the driver’s face. Sony claims that the sensors can also read the driver’s lipd for voice commands in a noisy cabin.
In terms of adaptability, the Vision-S concept comes equipped with a 5G connection, allowing for high-speed, high-capacity and low-latency connectivity between the car’s onboard system and the cloud. Sony’s intentions here are to establish a remote driving experience. Something it’s trying to achieve by conducting driving experiments connecting Japan and Germany with 5G and the telematics system installed in VISION-S 01.
Finally, as per Yoshida, “The VIsion-S also evolves mobility as an entertainment space, including gaming experience and audio.” Now how exactly that might shape up remains to be seen.
But the big surprise came in the form of Sony Mobility, a new company that will “explore the commercial launch of Sony’s EV”. While the statement may be seen as rather vague, the enthusiast in us can’t not be happy. Back in 2020, when Sony unveiled an older version of the Vision-S concept, it firmly denied that it had any intention of entering the automotive industry.
Back then the tech giant had no experience of building cars. But now, it has partnered with industry suppliers such as Bosch, Continental AG, Magna International, and Benteler.
Could this mean we’ll take a Sony car for a ride anytime soon? Maybe. But for now, Apple, that’s your cue to get things going.
(Image credits: Sony)