A Chinese startup has unveiled its vision for the car of the future at CES 2018, promising to deliver an “intuitive and intelligent” car internationally starting next year from around $45,000 (about R600, 000).
Byton has showcased its electric-powered concept car at CES in Las Vegas and is touted as a computing device on wheels, equipped with a “digital” lounge featuring a panoramic display acting as a hub for navigation, entertainment and even monitoring the health of its occupants.
The idea has been backed by more than $200 million from investors including Chinese tech giant Tencent. The name ”Byton” actually means “bytes on wheels” and is one of the latest entrants amount a tremendous number of startups and established players trying to emulate Tesla in the race for a new kind of vehicle which can be adapted for autonomous driving.
Byton, led by former executives from Tesla, BMW, Apple, and Google, said it expects to launch in China by 2019 and in the United States and Europe by 2020.
The Byton car is set to use facial recognition to unlock and adapt to the driver and offer a range of other ways to interact including voice control with Amazon Alexa, touch and gesture. It car will also include 5G connectivity to the internet cloud and improve its functions with artificial intelligence.
The car will have a range of more than 500 kilometres before having to recharge it and will be able to “top up” its battery in 15 to 30 minutes.