Earlier this year during CES 2023, Sony and Honda announced their joint venture, Sony Honda Mobility, with their new EV prototype — AFEELA. This is also Sony’s first venture to offer cutting-edge technology for a self-driving car powered by Epic Games chips. At a glance, the most unique feature of the car is the “moving entertainment space” or its media bar. It opens a new era with screen, sound, and ambiance that allows you to communicate with people.
The AFEELA brand stands for “feel”, a concept that’s internal to the goal of the car for people to experience an interactive relationship with smart units using the sense of network and IT. Its most prominent highlight is the media display screen positioned between the headlights which shows battery status, weather information, customized animations, and possibly other information going forward.
The prototype has 45 cameras and sensors both inside and outside. With a rating of Level 3 for self-driving, it allows users to operate the car autonomously in normal environmental conditions and under the supervision of a driver. The sensors enable drivers to personalize AFEELAs cockpit based on their biometric data. You can adjust the position of the seat, steering wheel, and surround sound to precisely match your height.
What it’s like
Sony Honda Mobility describes the car’s sinuous exterior as a spaceship equipped with a glass roof and self-opening doors. AFEELA’s interior has a soft, rounded tone and wraps the occupants in a soft cocoon. It is simple, comfortable, and contains enough human-centric space that merges with necessary functions and experiences. The panoramic screen extends across the entire front area and the unique steering design minimizes distractions.
There are two large screens with surround sound for the back seats of the car so that passengers can watch movies or play games. The screens can also display augmented reality driving controls. While Epic Games created its gaming engine, Unreal Engine developed the graphics for it.
The vehicle is connected to the cloud, allowing systems to continuously update based on the subscription model. The maximum computing power of the electronic control system is 800 TOPS. To accomplish all the high-performance computations, AFEELA is equipped with the Snapdragon digital chassis from telecommunications company Qualcomm.
At the media event ahead of the CES 2023, Yasuhide Mizuno, the CEO of the Sony Honda Mobility joint venture said, “We want to think outside of the box to revisit the underlying philosophy of vehicle design.” With that in mind, they created AFEELA with Sony’s sensor technology and Honda’s safety technology.
YouTube: AFEELA | Concept Movie
Photo credits: The images used in the article are owned by Sony Honda Mobility and have been provided for press usage.