For the Volkswagen Group, the future of mobility will be automated driving and this is why at the 2017 Geneva International Motor Show, it has revealed its first ever self-driving car dubbed as the Sedric.
Not only will this be a self-driving model but it will have automated driving of Level 5, which is the highest stage when it comes to automation. In addition to being fully autonomous, this car is 100% connected and runs on pure electricity. With just the press of the OneButton, it can immediately move and then collect the passengers. Just to show how smart it is, it can independently perform all of the needed driving tasks. Being automated, it means there are no cockpit, pedals, or even, steering wheel.
Volkswagen Group CEO Matthias Müller shared that the brand and Audi have been the pioneers when it comes to autonomous driving and the brand hopes to highlight this claim by having a more proactive role in forming the next evolutionary stage. He added that Volkswagen believes not only in the future of this technology but also of its long-term potential.
Being the first concept car to come from Volkswagen Group, the Sedric was first designed, then developed, and later built at the Future Center in Potsdam. This was made possible under the partnership with the Volkswagen Group Research in Wolfsburg.
This concept is also part of the brand’s "TOGETHER – Strategy 2025." Under this plan, Volkswagen hopes to become the worldwide leader when it comes to sustainable mobility. Thus, in preparing for the future, the brand hopes to keep holding on to the traditional values that have made it what it is today while coming up with new priorities.
Under this strategy, Volkswagen intends to introduce the world to 60 new models in 2017 alone. In addition, the brand also aims to launch a total of 30 battery powered vehicles by 2025. It will not only be about new models though as the brand also wants to come up with new core competencies not just in artificial intelligence and autonomous driving but also in battery technology and mobility solutions. In order to make this happen, Volkswagen is putting up 37 competence centers, as well as digital labs, worldwide in order to come with different solutions for the digital world of the future.
Moving forward, Volkswagen hopes that it will have a bigger role both as an incubator and as a catalyst when it comes to ideas. The brand wants to look into the future and be able to utilize its knowledge, competence, and creativity. The end result is that the various innovations will be offered to the customers at a faster rate.
CEO Müller clarified that while the brand has long been known to excel in making new models, it will not be entirely about that. The concept car, he added, represents the new self-image of the Group as well as a new form of partnership and knowledge transfer.