After a year of unveiling at the Consumer Electric Show 2020 Technology Exhibition, Japanese tech giant Sony is all set to test its first-ever Vision-S concept car on public roads in prototype form.
Japanese Tech Giant, Sony recently announced that their company began testing its Electric vehicle Vision-S on public roads. Officials added that the testing for the prototype vehicle started last month in Austria, which was referred to as “technical evaluation”, as the company continues to work to improve the safety features.
It may or may not be available for sale shortly, but the company began testing its first electric car prototype on public roads in Austria.
According to reports from the sources, the development phase of the prototype vehicle has reached ‘the next stage’ and the company is planning to carry out testing in other regions as well.
The company shared some pictures that show their prototype with a number plate and a camouflage-style wrap under test by engineers in Austria. It shows the advanced automotive technology the company is developing.
Sony developed Vision-S to show its autonomous driving and in-car entertainment systems, and there is no doubt that the company may soon bring this prototype into production. Sony’s boss Kenichiro Yoshida said that this prototype is their contribution to the future of mobility.
This image shows a prototype of the Sony Vision-S electric car.
About the Electric Vehicle-Vision-S
Vision-S is fully-electric, a four-seater car, powered by two 200 kilowatt motors — installed at its front and rear. The overall weight of this car is 5,180 pounds or 2,350 kilograms. The vehicle is full of high-end technologies and comes with 33 sensors inside and out to ensure the safety of passengers and support multiple jobs. Sensors like CMOS image sensors, offering high-definition and high dynamic range dominating LED flicker, and solid-state lidar. Sensors to identify people and objects sitting inside and located outside, autonomous parking, radar, and ultrasonic sensors, and much more as a part of safety concern.
The electric car is Sony’s contribution Sony to the highly-advanced autonomous driving society.
This car is not a self-driving car. It comes with advanced cruise control and can change lanes automatically and do the park without assistance. Sony stated that their prototype can reach Level 4 or higher. This car supports 5G, cloud AI, and other innovative technologies.
This picture shows a fully functioning infotainment display, the wide-dashboard, the central display system highlighting the details of the surroundings of the car in motion. There are separate tabs for the camera, music player, and other easy-to-use interfaces.
Sony also incorporated its sound audio-processing system with 360 Reality Audio. Each seat has its speakers for passengers to get their personal audio experience. Drivers can control the car from the phone and manage operations like calling it from the parking lot, adjust the cabin temperature, change the music, etc.
For the prototype vehicle, Sony partnered with some significant vehicle manufacturers like Magna Steyr. Sony released a video on January 11 wherein we could see Frank Klein, the president of Magna Steyr, describing the Vision-S as the starting point of their association with Sony.
Some of the technical details of Sony’s concept, which has been developed in partnership with tech giants like Magna Steyr, Bosch, Nvidia, and others, have been made public. According to Sony, the prototype is driven by a pair of 268bhp electric motors giving it a 0-62mph time of 4.8sec and a top speed of 149mph.
The Vision-S comes loaded with a ton of features and one of them is the number of 3D Time-of-flight (ToF) in-car sensors that can sense and recognize people inside to adjust the infotainment and comfort systems of the car.
The Vehicle concept also features in-house artificial intelligence-AI, telecommunication, and cloud technology, all of these technologies can be accessed via a large panoramic touchscreen overshadowing the dashboard. Sony stated that these systems are operated via an “intuitive user interface”.
The dashboard comes with a long list of displays, allowing the driver and passengers to interact with a customized interface. The car uses machine learning to understand its driver and can handle things like adjusting the inside temperature when it senses that one of its passengers fell asleep.
We all know that Sony is not so much into making cars, it will be quite interesting to see how the company plan to launch its Vision-S in the future. Especially when established player in this sector Elon Musk’s Tesla sold 4,99,550 vehicles in 2020.
Adding that the vehicle is only a prototype, and the company is not known for making cars, it would be worth seeing what this company has in store for the Sony Vision-S.
On one of the websites where the company highlighted the outline of the project and its specifications, it mentioned that the content and prototype vehicle are designed to give insights into their future concepts in the mobile Industry.
On Tuesday, another Tech giant Volkswagen Group stated that their Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand sold more than 134,000 battery electric vehicles in 2020, 45,117 in 2019, so there is a significant increase in sales over years. Additionally, the company sold 78,000 plug-in hybrids in 2020, and 37,053 in 2019. Replying to these figures, Tesla stated that they sold 180,570 vehicles in the Q4 of 2020.
Ralf Brandstätter, the CEO of Volkswagen Passenger Cars released a statement and said it was bullish on the prospects of the company to go forward with this vehicle. Their company is going well on the track to becoming the market leader in battery electric vehicles.
The CEO of Daimler also emphasized the importance of low-emission technologies and innovation in the field of mobility.
Ola Källenius talked to the media and said that the automotive industry is in the middle of a transformation.
He further added to his statement and said, the next step to building things that we already know is to build the world’s most desirable cars based on electrification and digitization.
This statement came soon after Daimler announced that its Mercedes-Benz Cars division sold more than 160,000 plug-in hybrids and all-electric vehicles last year.
Final Words: Well, Sony is not the only company that has shown interest in the automotive world. Apple is working with Hyundai and others to build its electric car. Samsung has its advanced automotive division working on advanced autonomous systems.
The company has still not cleared if it is planning to launch its car or just developing technology to sell it to other manufacturers’. There is no doubt that mobile has been trending since the last decade. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that the next mega-trend will be mobility.