Smart is showing its vision for future transport when people needing a vehicle will simply order a fully autonomous car that will drive itself to their location.
The Daimler brand will unveil the Vision EQ autonomous concept based on the ForTwo microcar at the upcoming Frankfurt auto show.
The Vision EQ ForTwo is powered solely by electricity and has no steering wheel and no pedals because it is designed to meet the needs of customers who will ride in, not drive the car.
The Vision EQ includes a number of personalization features that can be tailored to each customer. A panel where the grille traditionally sits can display a welcome message and even the customer's photo, while panels on the door are coated with a film that can display information. When the car is not in use, these can be used to advertise products. Inside the dashboard is a single, 24-inch long screen with two smaller screens at the outer edges
The car is proportioned and detailed to be viewed as a premium transportation device, Daimler said. "It is a radical approach with a cool and minimalist design. It embodies the urban luxury of the future," Daimler’s head of design, Gorden Wagener, said in a statement.
Design details include doors that pivot over the rear wheels rather than opening outward to both aid access in tight spaces and to avoid collisions with cyclists. Also practical for its car-share role is the man-made leather used to cover the bench-style seat, which can be easily wiped clean.
Smart envisages the car will roam continuously until hailed by a smartphone app, unless the 30kWh battery needs charging, when it will drive to a charge point.
Daimler currently uses Smart cars for its Car2Go car-sharing scheme, and says it current has 2.6 customers worldwide. It said car-sharing schemes worldwide will grow fivefold to 36.7 million customers by 2025.