Audi activesphere Concept is Part Truck, Part SUV

Photo By: Audi

Audi has released another entrant into its “sphere” of EV concept cars, this time with the all-electric Audi “activesphere” (small “a”), a curious mix of sports car, SUV, pickup truck, crossover, and science fiction. It is the fourth iteration in the series of “sphere” vehicles.

Audi activesphere concept

Photo by Audi

Audi activesphere concept

Photo by Audi

Audi activesphere concept

Photo by Audi

The Audi activesphere concept combines opposites into a perfect synthesis: the elegance of a four-door coupé with true offroad-capabilities and surprising flexibility on the outside, the seamless fusion of the digital and physical world on the inside.

Photo by Audi

Audi activesphere concept

Photo by Audi

The activesphere concept was dreamed up in California, according to an Audi press release, and can literally transform from a sporting coupe to a sort-of-pickup truck to a lifted SUV. The all-electric drivetrain boasts a total of 435 horsepower flowing to the de-rigueur quattro all-wheel-drive system via a pair of motors. Power comes from an 800-Volt battery of unstated capacity, but the range is given as 600 kilometers (372 miles). Battery low? An 80% recharge hits in 25 minutes from a 275kW DC Level III charger.

Interesting features abound, the unique shape notwithstanding. From its “car” form, the activeshere can become a sort of pickup truck. The rear section, normally a trunk, features a sliding roof and truck-like bed and tailgate that can haul outsize cargo (like a quartet of ebikes, per the photos). When activated, an interior divider rises to seal off the passenger compartment from the bed area. Also, up top: a built-in ski rack can be activated when needed and folds flush into the roof when not.

READ MORE: Rumor: Nissan Killing Titan To Build Electric Frontier Pickup Truck

The activesphere body has no B-pillar, and the car doors open suicide-style to allow easy ingress-egress out of the vehicle’s seats. The suspension is fully adjustable and can bring the activesphere low to the ground for pavement driving and then rise for off-road duty. It can adjust a total of 80 millimeters – about four inches – from a base height of 208mm. Audi says the approach angle is 18.9 degrees and the departure angle 28.1 degrees. The stock wheels are 22-inchers. 

Audi has gone all in on augmented reality with the activesphere, including for the driver. Headsets will blend the driver’s view with data points and car controls in VR, and eye movement tech will effectively allow users to control the glasses hands-free by looking at objects or data points. Wearers can also “touch” VR/AR objects (like climate controls) to manipulate them. Naturally, the car has autonomous driving ability since passengers will clearly be busy with their headsets, phones, and all else. The entire dash, steering wheel, and other controls neatly fold away while AI takes the wheel.

Audi activesphere concept

Photo by Audi

Audi activesphere concept

Photo by Audi

Audi activesphere concept

Photo by Audi

Audi activesphere concept

Photo by Audi

Project leader Gael Buzyn describes the idea behind the latest entry as “a new type of crossover that cleverly combines the elegance of an Audi Sportback, [with] the practicality of an SUV and true off-road capabilities.”

As noted, this is the fourth Audi sphere-mobile. You can read more about the activesphere here and the rest of the concept cars here

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