The Mercedes Car of the Future Is a Luxury Lounge on Wheels
Let's quiet down about flying cars for a minute, because self-driving cars are having a moment, and we've got to say they might sound even better than the airborne concept. At this year's CES, Mercedes-Benz revealed its vision for a driverless car, the F 015 Luxury in Motion research sedan, which has an emphasis on luxury, of course.
As Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Daimler AG and head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, said during the CES presentation, self-driving cars will make "quality time and private space . . . the true luxury goods in the future." Ah yes, a relaxing commute, truly the most luxurious item of all. The F 015 is a minimalist design fan's dream machine with a streamlined shape, bright white interiors, windows that double as screens, and walnut wood floor and seat trims. There are zero buttons inside; everything is controlled by gestures and eye tracking. And "passenger" is much too pedestrian a word for those sitting inside what Mercedes bills as a luxury lounge; they're called guests, thank you. Though the car is designed to drive itself, should a person be feeling very retro, a steering wheel is on hand to get back into the driver's seat.
The race to getting a consumer-ready self-driving car on the road is under way. This week, an Audi A7 showed off some magic by driving itself from San Francisco to Las Vegas to get to CES, and BMW is showcasing its self-parking car. Meanwhile, Google is taking its straight-out-of-Toontown driverless car on the roads of Northern California for test runs.
Check out more looks at the F 015's ultraluxe interior in the following video and pictures.