Land Rover Discovery Concept
Last week we talked about Land Rover’s newly unveiled ‘transparent bonnet’ which futuristically allows drivers to see through the front of their cars to the road ahead. This bonnet, Land Rover promised, would be just one of many technological advances to feature on their new Discovery Vision concept car, which was unveiled in New York last week, along with a Virgin Galactic Space Shuttle.
And it turns out they weren’t lying, this is possibly the most gadget-filled car we’ve ever seen; the kind of car that would make even Q spit out his mouthful of coffee and yell “wtf?”.
Let’s start with the inside, which has seven seats with seemingly infinite configurations. You can have three seats in the middle, two in the middle – there’s even an option to go “limousine” style with all three middle seats dropped into the floor. The seats’ wide variety of configurations isn’t their only remarkable feature however. Four of them also have 10 inch screens embedded into their backs. ‘Sure,’ you might say, ‘all posh cars have TVs in nowadays.’ Maybe so, but there aren’t many that allow the driver to have a video conference with the passengers in the back.
This could be a game changer for family dynamics; there’ll be no more incessant arguing with the kids now – all the driver needs to do is hang up.
Next on the list of advances is the car’s extensive use of Smart Glass. When connected to the internet, the car projects information about the surrounding area onto the windows. It’s a bit like Google Glass for your car. Furthermore, the technology also allows for choice imagery to be projected onto the sunroof, so passengers can be travelling through Skegness whilst enjoying the sun of the French Riviera (or the other way around, depending on your preference).
The surprises aren’t confined to the car’s interior, however. There’s also an option to drive the car remotely which, as well as allowing you to recreate the armchair scene from Mr Bean, also has practical applications. Imagine, for instance, attempting to hitch a trailer onto the back of a car. It’s usually an arduous task, but one made easy with this Land Rover’s technology. Of course, this is a concept car, not a production vehicle, but a spokesman has described the technology as currently being in a late testing phase and not far at all from reality. Caravanners rejoice.
This is by no means an extensive list – there’s also ‘Laser Terrain Scanning’, laser headlamps, and a huge range of user-interface assistance, and the list, no doubt, goes on. But if just a fraction of these new technologies are rolled out in production vehicles any time soon, then Land Rover could easily forge a reputation for itself as the Q of the motoring world.
The new Land Rover Discovery is set for launch in 2015, with the Discovery Sport first up. And whilst we may not see the technology, we can expect the styling cues to be very similar.