Jaguar Land Rover is preparing for the inevitable coming of EVs, car sharing, and autonomous vehicles just like most other automakers. And it has chosen the Tech Fest in London to show its plan of action, announcing it will offer an electrified powertrain on every model starting from 2020, and debuting an autonomous concept with a steering wheel that acts as a personal concierge.
At the heart of jaguar’s ‘future-type’ concept is the world’s first intelligent and connected steering wheel. This steering wheel lives in the home and becomes a companion to both its owner and vehicle. ‘sayer’ – named after the designer of the classic ‘e-type’ – is the first voice-activated artificial intelligence steering wheel that will be able to carry out hundreds of tasks. It can summon the car, play music, book a table and it even knows what’s in the fridge. ‘sayer’ signals the owner’s membership of the british-automaker’s on-demand service club — offering either sole ownership, or the option of sharing the car with others in the community, meaning that you only need to fully own the steering wheel, not the car itself.
People can ask the steering wheel for directions from the comfort of their own home and it will work out when you get up, when a car needs to autonomously arrive at your door and even advise which parts of the journey you might enjoy driving. If the driver wants to be alone and concentrate on the thrill of driving, ‘sayer’ can take the back seat. In the tomorrow’s connected landscape, a fleet of fully-charged ‘future-types’ could be available for customers on-demand. If you are taking your child to school, and only need two seats, you can summon a car with 2+1 social seating, so you can chat face-to-face as the car autonomously drives you to your destination.
Jaguar’s ‘future-type’ will communicate with other cars and use co-operative driving technologies.
This dual approach will allow drivers to choose either autonomous or assisted driving, with the assisted driver benefiting from the same advanced technologies that allow the vehicle to drive itself. These technologies will work in the background to make driving safer and more enjoyable in the future, with the car always alert and aware of situations developing over the horizon.
Future-type offers an insight into the potential for driving and car ownership in the future. It’s part of our vision for how a luxury car brand could continue to be desirable, in a more digital and autonomous age,’ comments ian callum, director of design, jaguar. He continues, ‘our future-type concept is an advanced research project looking at how we can ensure an on-demand jaguar will appeal to customers in 2040 and beyond.whether it’s commuting to work, autonomously collecting children from school or enjoying driving yourself on the weekend in the countryside, if there’s a choice of on-demand cars driving around city streets, we need to ensure customers desire our 24/7 service over our competitors.’
Ian callum adds, ‘today, jaguar offers customers a dynamic, emotional experience. Whether it’s the exhilarating way they drive, the way they sound, the iconic design or the connection drivers feel with the road, customers tell us that their jaguar makes them feel special. With the future-type we’ve been investigating how we can keep this emotional connection in a future world where people may choose not to own a car, or when a jaguar is an autonomous, on-demand vehicle.’