Audi Activesphere: A new concept of lifestyle vehicles in electric mobility
Audi Activesphere concept gets an advanced adaptable rear body section that transforms itself from a coupe SUV to a pickup truck.
Thursday February 02, 2023,
4 min Read
Audi recently pulled the wraps off its Activesphere concept at the Celebration of Progress event in Berlin. The fourth and final model from Audi’s Sphere range of pre-production concept cars follows the Grandsphere luxury saloon, the Skysphere convertible, and the Urbansphere MPV.
With future mobility deemed to be powered by batteries, there is a question mark on the form and availability of lifestyle vehicles. The Activesphere concept gives a sneak peek at what future lifestyle battery-powered vehicles could look like.
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Going with its nature, the Activesphere concept flaunts a rugged exterior styling with a four-door coupe crossover design. The 4.98m long EV concept boasts impressive ground clearance, and its large 22-inch wheels lend it an indomitable presence.
The noticeable highlight is the reshaped single-frame grille, which will find its way to all of Audi’s next-generation EVs (although not in transparent form), expected to hit markets by the latter half of this decade. Other visual highlights include muscular rear arches, rakish silhouette, sloping roof, and minimal creases along the side profile.
Audi confirmed that the Activesphere concept will lead to a full production-spec model in the future, however, that is unlikely to happen before 2026. In fact, elements from the concept, like the reshaped single-frame front grille, swollen rear haunches, and trick dynamic OLED lighting patterns, are expected to be carried forward to the final production model.
Coupe SUV turns into pickup truck
In terms of dimensions, the Activesphere concept measures 4.98m long, 2.07m wide, and 1.60m high. Besides, the 2.97m wheelbase will offer generous legroom for passengers. The biggest highlight is its adaptable rear section, much like its sibling Skysphere.
The rear section features a movable glass panel with a motorised bulkhead and tailgate, which slides almost flush with the roof of the car, if and when required. This opens a flat cargo bed at the rear like a pickup truck to be used to load multiple bicycles, full-size golf kits, or other heavy luggage with ease. Further, a ski rack is integrated into the centre of the roof structure, making it a proper lifestyle vehicle.
Augmented reality experience
Audi offers an out-of-the-world, in-cabin experience in the Activesphere concept by getting rid of all conventional physical controls, even touchscreens. Instead, it comes with an interactive hologram set-up called Audi Dimensions, accessed via augmented reality headsets for the driver and passengers.
Even key displays and functions of the car, hosted in this virtual platform, can be controlled via gestures. The headsets occupy the driver’s field of vision and use cameras and LiDAR sensors to create virtual touchpoints for controlling various functions of the electric coupe SUV.
Capable powertrain with AWD capability
Acitvesphere is based on the Premium Platform Electric (PPE), jointly developed by Audi and Porsche. This all-electric skateboard architecture is designed to accommodate an unprecedented range of high-volume automobiles, including SUVs and CUVs with high ground clearance and cars with a flat silhouette, which are part of Audi’s core product range.
The Activesphere packs a large 100kWh battery pack that can offer a claimed range of over 600 km. The battery supplies energy to electric motors mounted on the front and rear axles, delivering a total output of 436 bhp (325 kW) and a torque of 720 Nm. Activesphere also benefits from Level 4 autonomous driving capabilities, allowing it to drive itself in designated areas.
The twin-motor setup with Audi’s latest Quattro system provides all-wheel-drive capabilities. Enhancing its off-roading credentials is active air suspension that can raise the car’s ground clearance by 80mm up to 248mm. The 22-inch wheels are shod with heavy-duty all-terrain tyres, further aided by an approach angle of 18.9 degrees and a departure angle of 28.1 degrees.
(Images courtesy: Audi)
Edited by Suman Singh