Volvo has released some details about the futuristic Polestar Precept, an electric concept car from the Swedish automaker’s EV brand.
Although it’s just a concept, the Precept hints at what the brand has in store for its upcoming vehicles.
The “Precept showcases our future, not as a fancy dream or something out of a sci-fi movie,” said Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath in a press release. “This is our reality, to come.”
Here are four cool features that could make it into real-life production cars from the Swedish brand. You might even start to see these features industry-wide.
Android-Powered Infotainment System
Infotainment systems can be so frustrating because there’s no universal standard. While many automakers try to engineer their proprietary infotainment systems to mimic smartphones, it’s never as easy or intuitive. Although Apple CarPlay and Android Auto have helped increased usability, once you leave that app, you’re back to using whatever system the automaker pre-installed.
The Android operating system is the most widely used smartphone OS in the world, so it makes a lot of sense that Polestar will be using an Android-powered system to underpin its infotainment. As a highly configurable and popular system, many people are already familiar with how an Android system and smartphone operate, so should be able to navigate around the Precept’s infotainment system pretty intuitively.
This OS would also enable a higher level of connectivity between a car and a smartphone, and better integration with tools like Google’s voice-activated assistant, Google Maps, and even smarthomes.
Recycled, Vegan Interior
I always joke that a big sign that a neighbourhood is being gentrified is an increased number of vegan restaurants. Similarly, luxury brands have begun embracing vegan interiors as a way to be more sustainable and address customer preferences.
Polestar has been working with a company to create a flax-based natural composite that they say will reduce its plastic use in its cars by 80 per cent. The composite is also lighter and stronger than the plastics, which can result in better range and fuel economy.
The seat coverings in the Precept are made from 100 per cent recycled plastic bottles via a process that Polestar says creates no waste. The EV’s headliner is also made from recycled plastic bottles and carpets are crafted using recovered fishing nets.
Recycled cork and other waste from the wine industry are being converted to make a vinyl that’s used in seat bolsters and head rests.
The availability of in-car video streaming when parked will be a new reality as a way for drivers and passengers to keep themselves entertained while they charge the electric car. Soon, drivers will be able to watch Netflix right from their car’s touchscreen instead of draining their phone or tablet.
Custom Information Displays
The Precept concept uses a few sensors to track a driver’s movements, eyes, positioning, and activities to adjust how information is displayed. The whole point is to make information easier to digest and less distracting to absorb. For example, when a driver is focused on the road ahead, the display will show larger and brighter icons and fonts so they can see the information better in their peripheral. If the driver is parked and looking directly at the screens, the car might make more information available because it knows the driver isn’t being distracted or isn’t in motion.
The Precept concept has a big 15-inch display and a 12.5-inch digital dashboard.