LiDAR Ready Concept Points to Volvo’s AV Future

Volvo has unveiled its latest premium BEV concept in the shape of the Volvo Concept Recharge, it says, sets the template for the next generation automated driving models.

This is the first BEV-only Volvo SUV on a new electric-only technology base featuring flat floors. The result is shorter overhangs, as well as more interior space, including a large storage area between the front seats.

Designers have repositioned the seats, altered the roof profile and lowered the bonnet of the car while retaining the high-level driving experience of cars such as the Volvo XC40, XC60 and XC90. These changes claim efficiency gains in aerodynamics compared with a typical SUV, which improves range.

The traditional grille has been replaced with a shield-like structure, supported by a new interpretation of Thor’s Hammer headlight design. These include HD technology-enabled pure graphic which open at night to reveal the main lamp units. Vertical rear lamps are reimagined with a set of wings that extend at higher cruising speeds to further improve overall aerodynamics.

A large, 15-inch standing touchscreen is the center of a new and improved next-generation connected infotainment system. Finally, the Concept Recharge begins the move to increase of automated driving with a LiDAR sensor, built by technology company Luminar, placed in an optimal position on the roof to collect data on the environment around the car.

Robin Page, head of design at Volvo Cars, said: “Our Concept Recharge represents a manifesto for the all-electric future of Volvo Cars, as well as a new type of vehicle. It displays new and modern proportions that go hand in hand with increased versatility and shows what technology can enable in terms of design.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in London. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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