Audi has presented the Audi grandsphere concept.
The second of three ‘sphere’ concepts, the Audi grandsphere concept aims to offer customers the experience of a first-class flight, combining the luxury of private travel with a comprehensive onboard experience offering. Level 4 automated driving also makes new dimensions of freedom possible in the Audi grandsphere.
At 5,350mm long, 2,000mm wide, and 1,390mm high, the Audi grandsphere concept sports dimensions that place it unambiguously luxurious automobile. A 3,190mm wheelbase indicates top value, even overshadowing the long wheelbase version of the current Audi A8.
The concept car sports a design that tells of its electric drivetrain thanks to a short overhang, a flat hood, and a windshield that projects far forward as the foremost limit of the large interior.
Nonetheless, it sports many of the proportions of a traditional grand tourer. This is noticiable from the top edge of the hood, which is drawn far into the side of the chassis in a horizontal line, suggesting a long engine compartment. In the rear, that line continues at the same height across the rear wheel well, encompassing the whole cabin and emphasising its size.
A second horizontal line emanates from the bottom edge of the hood and runs under the side windows and likewise around the entire cabin. This subdivides the door surfaces into horizontally oriented shoulders and the convex verticals below them above the rocker panel.
The slender rear behind the massive C-pillar is a quote from traditional streamlining, and the dynamically sloping arc of the roofline reveals the grandsphere as part of the Audi Sportback tradition.
The Audi grandsphere is built upon Audi’s Premium Platform Electric platform. The platform allows a 120kWh battery to be housed between the axles, powering electric motors mounted on the front and rear to deliver all-wheel drive on demand for a perfect balance between driving dynamics and energy efficiency.
The two electric motors will deliver up to 711bhp and a maximum torque of 960Nm. 800V charging technology allows the battery to be charged at up to 270kW. A range of more than 750km – depending on the selected drive system and power output – makes the Audi grandsphere concept suitable for travelling long distances.
Step into the cabin and you won’t find any traditional dial instruments nor black screens. Instead, there are just surfaces of wood and wool, while synthetic textile fabrics and metal are visible and pleasant to touch as wall cladding, seat covering, and carpeting.
Many of these materials, like the hornbeam veneers, come from sustainable cultivation or are made from recycled raw materials. There is no leather in the Audi grandsphere – even this is in keeping with a progressive understanding of luxury, which is always inseparable from sustainability.
The necessary information is instead projected onto the wooden surfaces, distributed across the entire width of the interior or segmented for the driver and front seat passenger depending on the driving mode selected. Alternatively, the projection surfaces can also be used – in automated driving mode – as CinemaScope screens for infotainment content or even as screens for video conferences.
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