Audi’s design chief Marc Lichte shared some of the company’s plans regarding the fully-electric version of its flagship model, the A8. The EV is expected to be announced sometime next year and it will be very close to the Grandsphere concept.
The Grandsphere was initially announced in 2021 and was then followed by a series of other concept vehicles – the Urbansphere, Skyshpere and the Activesphere. Those were some striking-looking designs, so it’s exciting to hear that the A8 will look a lot like the Grandsphere.
The Grandsphere is a very concrete teaser. It’s not far away from what will become production. It’s not 1:1 but very close.
The vehicle will be built on the PPE electric car platform, co-developed with Porsche. The same platform will serve as a basis of the Audi Q6 E-tron and the electric versions of the popular A4 and A6 models. The PPE is also used in the Porsche Macan EV.
If the A8 is indeed going to be very close to the Grandsphere, we wounder if the driverless-centric concept is retained. One of the Grandsphere’s key selling points is its level 4 autonomous driving and the fact that the steering wheel and pedals retract to provide more room for the driver when human input is not needed. That’s obviously too far as that technology is far and away, but can Audi at least achieve level 3?
More realistic is that Audi achieves the spacious, lounge-like interior and the quirky, but effective aerodynamic chassis, which is still going to be pretty impressive.
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