Autonomous vehicles and hydrogen cars are two of today’s most futuristic transportation technologies – and Mercedes-Benz just combined the two in its new Vision Tokyo car. The concept vehicle looks like a sleek city friendly van, but inside and under the hood it’s packed with technologies and luxuries that will be available in the not too distant future. Or, as Mercedes puts it, it’s an autonomous “automotive lounge for a future generation of megacities.”
Unveiled at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show, the Vision Tokyo concept borrows many styling cues from the F 015 Luxury in Motion concept that debuted earlier this year. Even though most car lovers wouldn’t be caught dead driving a minivan, Mercedes-Benz describes the concept as an urban transformer that reflects the growing youthfulness of the Mercedes-Benz brand. With the Vision Tokyo concept, Mercedes-Benz aims to show how the car of the future can be turned into a hip living space and in this case “a chill-out zone in the midst of megacity traffic mayhem.”
“The Mercedes-Benz Vision Tokyo embodies the concept of an automotive lounge for a future generation of megacities. The purity and sensuality of the Vision Tokyo’s styling defines a new interpretation of modern luxury from Mercedes-Benz,” stated Gorden Wagener, Head of Design at Daimler AG.
Since the Vision Tokyo concept is an autonomous vehicle, it’s interior doesn’t have to look like a conventional interior with front and back seats. Inside the Vision Tokyo concept has room for up to five passengers that can sit on a large, oval shaped couch. The unique lounge-style arrangement allows everyone on board to enjoy the benefits of autonomous driving. It is possible to drive the Vision Tokyo concept, since a seat facing in the direction of travel can be released from the center of the couch at the front. The steering wheel, too, is then moved from its standby position into driving position.
Lastly the Vision Tokyo concept is powered by a hydrogen fuel cell electric drive system that has a driving range of 609 miles. The system gets its power from either hydrogen or wireless induction charging system. The Vision Tokyo concept can travel up to 118 miles from the energy in the battery, while the other 491 miles come from the electricity produced in the fuel cell.
All images © Mercedes-Benz