The End of Driving

Monday, 20 Jul 2009

Mike + Maaike have always wanted to design a car. And, with the current lost car industry, focus on global warming, awareness of oil dependency and the economic downturn, why not experiment?

The industrial designers, also known for designing the G1 Google Phone, have come up with  a self-driving electric passenger concept vehicle.

The Autonomobile (ATNMBL) is geared more for the passenger(s) rather than a driver. Check out the lounge-like interior with wrap around seating for seven. []


ATNMBL is the engineers vision of a concept car for 2040 that represents the end of driving. Upon entering the vehicle, passengers are presented with the question: “Where can I take you?” There is no steering wheel, brake pedal or drivers seat. ATNMBL drives by itself.


ATNMBL looks like micro-architecture. It has large windows, a pitched roof and is designed unlike any vehicle on the road today. Its mechanical components are densely packed and simplified, providing dramatically more interior space in a vehicle. Plus, it is shorter than most cars on the road today.


About the size of the parking space only a mini cooper or smart car can fit into. ATNMBL has wrap-around seating for seven, offers living comfort, views, conversations, entertainment, and social connectedness.


Driverless cars, once a fantasy requiring new roads and infrastructure, are now technologically possible, even inevitable. GPS, sophisticated sensors, and navigation databases will allow driverless vehicles to operate on the same roads we have today.


Passengers enter ATNMBL from the curb side through an electric glass sliding door into a standing-height entryway. Inside, the seating arrangement is a direct reference to the familiar living-room setting of a couch, side chair and low table. Riders are oriented towards each other and to the view outside through the large floor-to-ceiling windows on both sides. Centrally oriented is a large flat display that features live trip information, maps, and entertainment.


Mike + Maaike's vision is a new focus on the quality of time while in traffic and transit. Dismissing the need for extreme MPH and acceleration as irrelevant, performance can be measured by time savings instead.

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