New Mercedes-Benz Concept Is Driverless

Is the future almost here? We all know that one day we will be driving around in autonomous autos. But, perhaps that day has taken a step closer – thanks to German car brand Mercedes-Benz.

They have unleashed a concept car called the Vision Tokyo, which is aimed at young city slickers who have grown up with the Internet and online media. It’s a stunning looking car, and one that wouldn’t look out of place in a futuristic sci-fi blockbuster.

6.3 AMG SLS

There are LED lights at the front and rear of the vehicle, with color changes and different patterns going off when music is played on the inside.

But, looks aside, the key focus on the Vision Tokyo is without doubt the fact it comes equipped with a driverless mode. There is a steering wheel, and there’s a driver’s seat to keep things traditional. But, these can be put away into compartments while the occupant takes five. And, no doubt, they will be able to take longer than five.

There is enormous space in the back, with a large seat that fits around the cabin – much like a sofa or couch. So, there will be plenty of opportunity for entertainment, thanks to LED screens on the walls. Mercedes have an eye on holographic projection display – if that technology ever becomes available.

It is, in short, a small living space that you can get around in – much like a small caravan but without the embarrassment. And you can look out, too. It’s a single panel of continuous glass that gives you a complete view of the outside. All illuminated by the blue strip lighting on the exterior.

There’s much to love about this new concept. But it’s still early days, and it is unlikely you will see one in your used Mercedes dealership at any point in the near future. Despite its comforts, there are still some stark realities that driverless cars face – and they are likely to continue.

People just don’t trust autonomous cars, and given that many don’t even like using automatic gears, that isn’t going to change anytime soon. Consider, too, the fact that there are several moral questions that need answering about what a driverless car should do in an accident.

If an autonomous car is heading towards a crash, it will have some choices it can make to reduce the damage. But what if all those choices will result in the death of a human? Does the car decide to keep going to protect its occupant, and plough into a large group of people? Or does it veer off and swerve purposely into a wall, killing the occupant to save the group? In essence, all autonomous cars will have to be programmed to kill.

So, for the moment, at least, most people will be happy to look at the visionary ideas that car makers come up with. But regarding buying one and going driverless, it’s going to be a while yet.

What are your thoughts on driverless cars? Are you excited, or will you avoid them like the Sinclair C5? Let us know in the comments, folks!

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