Volkswagen is going fully autonomous for the upcoming Geneva International Motor Show. Meet the I.D. Vizzion, the latest autonomous concept that showcases VW’s claim for “future individual mobility.” The Vizzion concept is the fourth and largest member of the electrified I.D. family, but it’s remarkably different than its brethren.
“Inside the I.D. Vizzion, a completely new feeling of driving and living is created without a steering wheel or visible controls,” reads a statement from VW.
Hard to have any feeling of driving when there isn’t a steering wheel but okay.
Technicalities aside about the absence of a steering wheel, VW is showing how the future of transportation can be exciting: that vehicles can and will retain their distinct, emotional designs. In other words, the autonomous era is not likely to be filled with boring pods – at least not if VW has anything to say about it per the I.D. Vizzion.
“With its innovative technology, fully-automated operating concept, and elegant form, the premium class saloon is showing the direction Volkswagen is taking in the technology and design of its future electric models,” reads a statement from the automaker.
VW wants to apply said innovative technology toward a cleaner, safer, and more comfortable automobile. Part of their goal with the I.D. Vizzion is to make sure future mobility is not devoid of added value. In other words, how will all these headlines about automated driving really benefit the consumer? Are they just lofty promises, or are they something more? For VW, it’s the latter as engineers worked to include the benefits of autonomous driving within the I.D. Vizzion. This naturally means occupant safety, but it reaches beyond that.
For example, when the “Digital Chauffeur” is driving, passengers now have time to focus on other things. Perhaps they want to chat or get caught up on their reading? If they need anything changed inside the vehicle, a virtual host responds to voice prompts and gesture controls, and knows the preferred settings of each person using the vehicle. For those unable to drive – the elderly and disabled come to mind – VW will likely present the I.D. Vizzion concept as way for them to have mobility.
Power & Performance
The I.D. Vizzion is nearly 17 feet long, giving passengers plenty of room to stretch out and get comfortable. While VW is slim on the engineering specs, they do say the vehicle has two electric motors that drive all four wheels. The 111 kWh lithium-ion batteries enable a range of up to 413 miles when regenerative braking is factored in. Top speed is 112 mph, a little bit faster than we initially expected.
Electrification and technology of this sort will be huge for VW in the near future. By 2025, the brand plans to introduce more than 20 electrified models. The first, the I.D., an electric compact car, will arrive in 2020. After that, a new electric SUV called the I.D. Crozz and then the I.D. Buzz. In the meantime, the I.D. Vizzion will be on display at the Geneva International Motor Show beginning on March 8th.
Carl Anthony is Managing Editor of Automoblog and resides in Detroit, Michigan. He studies mechanical engineering at Wayne State University, serves on the Board of Directors for the Ally Jolie Baldwin Foundation, and is a loyal Detroit Lions fan.