Tag Archive: concept

Infiniti Prototype 9 Concept

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Nissan Motor Corporation and premium automotive brand Infiniti have unveiled a sleek, open-wheeled electric retro roadster prototype at the 2017 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance.

The car, called Prototype 9, is a celebration of Nissan Motor and Infiniti's ingenuity, artistry and craftsmanship. It represents a reimagining of a 1940s race car with time-honored production techniques employed to realize its retro design.

It started as a discussion: What if Infiniti had created a race car in the 1940s? If one were to imagine an open-wheeled Infiniti racer on the famous circuits of the era, such as Japan's Tamagawa Speedway, what would that look like?

The sketches were stunning and the idea so compelling that they had to produce a prototype. As other departments became aware of this, they volunteered their time to create a working vehicle.

The car is powered by a prototype electric motor and battery from Nissan's Advanced Powertrain Department. This nod to the future contrasts with the traditional materials and techniques applied for the Prototype 9's manufacture, including panels hand-beaten by a team of Takumi - Nissan Motor Corporation's master craftspeople.

Prototype 9 was inspired by an emerging era of Japanese motorsport. The custom-built Prince R380, which also makes its public debut at the 2017 Concours d'Elegance, broke several land speed records in 1965 before taking overall victory at the 1966 Japanese Grand Prix at Fuji Speedway.

Prince Motor Company is considered to be Japan's original builder of premium automobiles, and its legacy can be traced to Infiniti Motor Company and its current model line. The R380 in Pebble Beach is the actual Japanese Grand Prix-winning car, believed to be the only surviving R380.

Albaisa created a sketch, a starting point for bringing Prototype 9 to life, with sleek lines, and aeronautically-inspired bodywork crafted in bare sheet metal.

Initially shared only with close colleagues, the idea soon spread among Infiniti's design team members - with a number enthusiastically calling for the vehicle to be brought to life.

The sketch triggered a domino effect - each person who saw it felt it deserved more attention, and soon there was a burgeoning desire within Infiniti to take it beyond the drawing board.

More designers at the Infiniti Design Studio in Atsugi, Japan, began making their own detail contributions - the shape, design and materials that could feature in the cockpit, for example. Chasing a passion for beautiful vehicle design, the team moved to bring the sketch into the physical world.

The vehicle was transformed from a daring idea into scale design studies in clay. Full-size models were soon formed.

Finished in a bare sheet-metal skin, Prototype 9 is the result of countless hours of careful construction.

The vehicle's stunning bodywork is made from steel body panels wrapped around a steel ladder frame. The panels were hammered into shape by the Takumi.

In every other respect, the car is unashamedly inspired by retro aeronautical designs. Prototype 9 is defined by its smooth, aerodynamic surfaces, long bonnet and short overhangs, an exposed cockpit, and open-wheeled layout. 19-inch centre-locking wire-spoke wheels at each corner are even wrapped in period cross-ply competition tyres.

The intimate and focused cockpit is the result of two Japanese approaches to craftsmanship - 'mitate' (pronounced "mee-ta-teh") and 'shitate' ("shee-ta-teh"). 'Mitate' relates to the practice of curating and bringing together the best possible selection of materials. 'Shitate' is the desire to tailor the chosen combination of materials, bringing out their best characteristics.

In a cabin that features no distractions from the road ahead, the steering wheel rotates around a fixed central hub, housing the driver's instrument gauges. The hub itself finished in turned aluminium, an effect found on aircraft throughout the first half of the 20th century.

The car has been equipped with a next-generation EV powertrain. The Prototype 9 is the first Infiniti to be powered by a new EV powertrain - a 30 kWh high-voltage battery paired with a prototype electric motor, one not yet seen on a production vehicle.

The motor produces 120 kW (148 hp) and 320 Nm (236 lb ft) of torque and driving the rear wheels, via single-speed transmission. Prototype 9 has a top speed of 170 kph (105.6 mph), and sprints from 0-to-100 kph (0-to-62 mph) in 5.5 seconds, with a maximum EV range of 20 minutes under heavy track use.

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Immaculate conception: Mercedes Benz ‘Concept A Sedan’ heralds a new generation

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SENSUAL PURITY: The Concept A Sedan marks the dawn of an even more rigorous implementation of the carmaker’s design idiom

SENSUAL PURITY: The Concept A Sedan marks the dawn of an even more rigorous implementation of the carmaker’s design idiom

 

With the Concept A Sedan Mercedes-Benz is providing an outlook of the next generation of compact vehicles and a potential, new body type.

The Concept A Sedan (length/width/height: 4570/1870/1462 mm) has been designed with the proportions of a dynamic, coupé-like and simultaneously compact, premium sedan. This aim is emphasised by the traditional three-box design featuring short overhangs, especially at the rear, as well as the slim greenhouse that has been offset towards the rear.

Additional sedan characteristics are the relatively vertical Cpillar, larger side windows and the higher beltline.

The wheel arch design featuring a reduced arch dimension emphasises the exclusive 20inch wheels. The light alloy wheels radiate technical precision with their sporty aerowheel look featuring a structured surface between the spokes. The door handles of the show car are flush with the body, while the outside mirrors, in a contemporary reinterpretation, stand proud of the beltlines.

The striking front expresses self-confidence: this is crucially highlighted by the deep Panamericana grille tilted towards the front, featuring vertical chrome inserts and a star in the centre, as well as the stretched bonnet with Powerdomes. The large, lower air inlet featuring a diamond grid structure and a striking trim strip in dark chrome is also amongst the most eye-catching features.

The headlamps with their eyebrows as a typical feature of the brand as well as the striking grid structure on the inside guarantee a confident look – and a simultaneously high recognition value. The structural sculpture that has been broken down in detail represents a technically based counterpole to the sensual exterior – "stimulating contrast" is one of the six guiding principles of Mercedes-Benz design.

The grid structure in the lamps has been coated with a UV paint and it is exposed to ultraviolet light. As a result, the headlamps "glow" in different colours, depending on the light medium – the daytime running lamps, for instance, are white.

This unusual lighting technology is also used at the rear.

The striking tail light image has also been designed as a structural sculpture. In line with the evolved design philosophy the lines and gaps at the rear have been reduced.

As a contrast to the paintwork the rear bumper features a diffuser-look lower part trimmed in black and a chrome trim strip that emphasises the width and underlines the car's premium appeal. The integrated exhaust deflectors are finished in dark chrome.
Additional features of the roadworthy show car are dark privacy windows all-round as well as a large, panoramic glass roof.

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What a Vision!

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vision-mercedes-maybach-6-inside-800x450

Mercedes and its sensational luxury-class Maybach 6 coupé concept

The exclusive Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 has to be the most sensational luxury-class coupé we’ve seen in a while.

The 2+2-seater is a homage to the glorious age of the aero coupés and consciously carries this tradition forward into the future. The coupé reinterprets classic, emotional design principles in an extreme way, following the Mercedes design philosophy of sensual purity.

The Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6, which measures almost six metres in length, is designed as an electric car. The drive system has an output of 550 kW (750 hp). The shallow underfloor battery allows a range of over 500 kilometres according to the NEDC (over 200 miles according to EPA).

With its sensual, emotional design ("hot") and intelligent details ("cool"), the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 represents the ultimate in luxury. The classic aesthetic proportions of the show car - the extremely long bonnet, the low roof line and the rearward positioning of the greenhouse - recall the aero coupés of days gone by. But this is not retro design - this is a reinterpretation of classic, aesthetic principles.

At the same time the design is something unexpectedly new - cool, technoid and reduced. This is exemplified by the aerodynamically intelligent basic shape.

Even without aids such as spoilers, the airflow hugs the contours of the vehicle body and only breaks away very late at the tail end of the vehicle. Then there is the surprisingly technoid character of the narrow lights, the partially transparent rims and the split rear window.

Clearly defined contours and organically formed wings stand in contrast to the sharply drawn, extended feature line on each side which defines the upper vehicle body from the radiator grille across the entire length of the vehicle to the rear.

The main body has a bulging, muscular look, extending across the entire flank. There is also a striking contrast between the Maybach red paintwork and the chrome strips, which sit above the wheel arches and in the centre of the bonnet and boot lid.

A reinterpretation of the Mercedes-Maybach radiator grille with its fine, vertical struts accentuates the front end. The grille was inspired by a pinstriped suit. The radiator grille rests on two aerodynamically shaped supports on the outer right and left of the bumper.

The distinctive 24-inch wheels are a development of the aero rim from the Concept IAA (Intelligent Aerodynamic Automobile). A transparent shield in the vehicle colour provides a view of the aluminium spokes behind it.

A further highlight is provided by the gullwing doors, a hallmark Mercedes design element which has been brought up to date. They underline the sporty character of the vehicle's silhouette and feature innovatively designed aluminium trim. The exterior mirrors designed as cameras are supported on the wings.

vision-mercedes-maybach-6-cover-800x533

The extended, round "boat tail" format of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6's rear recalls a luxury yacht, and narrow tail lights which emphasise the width of the vehicle are integrated in its outer edges. Above this sit the two extremely shallow rear windows ("split window"). Further distinctive features at the rear include the diffuser with aluminium frame and the air outlets behind the wheel arches.

The interior of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 is a synthesis of intelligence and emotion and combines traditional Mercedes-Benz values with a new high-tech experience.

The dashboard wing curves across the door trim into the seat landscape, creating a 360° lounge. The new "inside out" spatial design adds a particular touch of finesse. The sitting surface forms a horizontal, which transitions into the vertical of the doors and finally becomes the underside of the dashboard wing.

In addition to the flowing contours, the material composition produces a luxury experience of the highest order. Authentic materials and colours such as rose gold are used to create luxurious accents. The interior, with its high-quality leather trim, has a cool colour scheme, which perfectly underlines the digital innovations.

The sitting surfaces have a Chesterfield look. In the doors and dashboard the traditional wood trim softens the appearance of the digital control and display interfaces.

As a contrast to the digital world of the displays, elm is used in the floor area, creating a refined yachting look. Elm is the palest open-pore wood, which Mercedes-Benz is currently working on for series use.

In the front luggage area of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 is a set of two suitcases, exclusively created for the vehicle. Here too the designers have followed the sensual, pure design idiom of Mercedes-Benz. Plenty of space has also been provided for further additions such as picnic accessories or personal items.

Ever since Mercedes-Benz invented the car 130 years ago, driving has been a source of enjoyment and delight. In the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 this can be seen above all in the "hyperanalogue" instruments with needles and circular, crystal-look displays.

The front windscreen serves as a transparent display: driving-related data and geographical information is shown across its full width, augmenting the outside world with additional information. This information can be controlled and adjusted by the occupants using gestures.

The luxury padded leather upholstery is a particular highlight. Its traditional look is combined with future technology here - the buttons, which would normally be trimmed in leather have been replaced in the upholstered surfaces by miniature "body sensor displays". These scan the passengers and monitor, for example, their vital functions.

As a result, comfort features such as seat climate or the massage function, for example, can be activated or the seat settings adjusted to the passenger. The sensors embedded in the upholstery also record the incidence of light, the colour of the occupant's clothing and the ambient temperature. This information can be used to trigger new, emotional lighting effects in the interior.

The concept car aims to embody the ultimate in luxury, and this is underlined by the fact that the driver can switch to digital/autonomous mode. Another highlight is offered by the floating, transparent centre tunnel, which visualises the drive system's electrical energy flow for the occupants.

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New GT make ‘Prancing Horse’ history

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City Square

The upcoming Paris Motor Show provides the venue for the unveiling of the GTC4Lusso T, the first four-seater in Prancing Horse history to sport a turbo-charged V8 engine.

Hailing a whole new Ferrari GT concept, the car is aimed at owners seeking a car that is sporty and versatile, as well as perfect for driving on a daily basis.

It effortlessly marries elegance, superb occupant comfort and sportiness with the thrilling driving dynamics delivered by a combination of rear-wheel-only drive, four-wheel steering, lighter overall weight and increased weight bias towards the rear (46:54).

The car’s 3.9-litre V8 turbo is the latest evolution to emerge from the engine family that was nominated the 2016 International Engine of the Year. Its maximum power output is 610 cv at 7,500 rpm while maximum torque of 760 Nm is available at between 3,000 and 5,250 rpm.

The V8 turbo’s characteristics suit day-to-day driving in urban contexts: a rich powerful soundtrack in acceleration that becomes more muted at lower speeds, rapid pick-up from low revs courtesy of versatile, modular torque delivery and, last but not least, excellent range.  

The GTC4Lusso T’s dynamic control systems have been specifically calibrated to boost responsiveness to commands. In particular, the 4WS (rear-wheel steering), which is integrated with Side Slip Control (SSC3), makes for more rapid response to steering wheel inputs entering and exiting corners, thanks to the rear wheels steering in the same direction as the front ones.  

The feeling of longitudinal performance in this new model has been enhanced at low speeds by Variable Boost Management and underscored by throttle response with zero turbo lag. Thanks to variable torque curves (VBM) between 3rd and 7th gear, longitudinal acceleration is consistent through the ratios, increasing smoothly with engine speed, resulting in a feeling of vivid but superbly progressive acceleration.

The GTC4Lusso T’s styling remains the same innovative take on the shooting brake coupé, reinterpreting the concept with an extremely streamlined, tapered shape that gives it an almost fastback-like silhouette.

The cabin is an effortless melding of distinctive Ferrari styling and the luxurious elegance expected of a four-seater GT.

The GTC4Lusso T features the unique Dual Cockpit architecture, designed to enhance the shared driving experience for both driver and passenger. It also incorporates the latest iteration of the infotainment system complete with an impressive 10.25” HD capacitive touchscreen.

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Futuristic stunner

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Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 - INSET 3 (800x451)

Mercedes-Maybach 6 coupe concept makes it debut in California

Pebble Beach, California has a very special beauty contest each August, which showcases magnificent classic cars. Mercedes felt it befitting to unveil its exclusive and sensational luxury-class coupé – the Vision.

The ‘Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6’ is a 2+2-seater, which pays homage to the glorious age of the aero coupés and consciously carries this tradition forward into the future, reinterpreting classic and emotional design principles. It echoes the Mercedes design philosophy of sensual purity.

Measuring almost six metres in length, it’s designed as an electric car, whose drive system outputs 550 kW (750 hp). The shallow underfloor battery allows a range of over 500 kilometres according to the NEDC (over 200 miles according to EPA).

With its sensual, emotional design ("hot") and intelligent details ("cool"), the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 represents the ultimate in luxury. The classic aesthetic proportions of the show car – the extremely long bonnet, the low roof line and the rearward positioning of the greenhouse – recall the aero coupés of days gone by. But this is not retro design – this is a reinterpretation of classic, aesthetic principles.

At the same time the design is something unexpectedly new – cool, technoid and reduced. This is exemplified by the aerodynamically intelligent basic shape. Even without aids such as spoilers, the airflow hugs the contours of the vehicle body and only breaks away very late at the tail end of the vehicle. Then there is the surprisingly technoid character of the narrow lights, the partially transparent rims and the split rear window.

Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 - INSET 1 (800x502)

Reinterpretation of classic, aesthetic principles: the exterior design

Clearly defined contours and organically formed wings stand in contrast to the sharply drawn, extended feature line on each side which defines the upper vehicle body from the radiator grille across the entire length of the vehicle to the rear.

The main body has a bulging, muscular look, extending across the entire flank. There is also a striking contrast between the Maybach red paintwork and the chrome strips which sit above the wheel arches and in the centre of the bonnet and boot lid.

A reinterpretation of the Mercedes-Maybach radiator grille with its fine, vertical struts accentuates the front end. The grille was inspired by a pinstriped suit. The radiator grille rests on two aerodynamically shaped supports on the outer right and left of the bumper.

The distinctive 24-inch wheels are a development of the aero rim from the Concept IAA (Intelligent Aerodynamic Automobile). A transparent shield in the vehicle colour provides a view of the aluminium spokes behind it.

A further highlight is provided by the gullwing doors, a hallmark Mercedes design element which has been brought up to date. They underline the sporty character of the vehicle's silhouette and feature innovatively designed aluminium trim. The exterior mirrors designed as cameras are supported on the wings.

The extended, round "boat tail" format of the rear recalls a luxury yacht, and narrow tail lights which emphasise the width of the vehicle are integrated in its outer edges. Above this sit the two extremely shallow rear windows ("split window"). Further distinctive features at the rear include the diffuser with aluminium frame and the air outlets behind the wheel arches.

Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 - REAR (800x360)

Luxurious 360° lounge featuring new materials: the interior design

The interior is a synthesis of intelligence and emotion and combines traditional Mercedes-Benz values with a new high-tech experience.

The dashboard wing curves across the door trim into the seat landscape, creating a 360° lounge. The new "inside out" spatial design adds a particular touch of finesse. The sitting surface forms a horizontal, which transitions into the vertical of the doors and finally becomes the underside of the dashboard wing.

In addition to the flowing contours, the material composition produces a luxury experience of the highest order. Authentic materials and colours such as rose gold are used to create luxurious accents.

The interior, with its high-quality leather trim, has a cool colour scheme which perfectly underlines the digital innovations.

The sitting surfaces have a Chesterfield look. In the doors and dashboard the traditional wood trim softens the appearance of the digital control and display interfaces.

As a contrast to the digital world of the displays, elm is used in the floor area, creating a refined yachting look. Elm is the palest open-pore wood which Mercedes-Benz is currently working on for series use.

In the front luggage area of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 is a set of two suitcases, exclusively created for the vehicle. Here too the designers have followed the sensual, pure design idiom of Mercedes-Benz. Plenty of space has also been provided for further additions such as picnic accessories or personal items.

Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 - INSET 2 (800x415)

Dipping into the future: a fusion of analogue and digital experience

Ever since Mercedes-Benz invented the car 130 years ago, driving has been a source of enjoyment and delight.

With the increase in digitisation comes a simultaneous need for sustainable analogue solutions, the design of which has been emphasised and in places exaggerated in the concept car. In the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 this can be seen above all in the "hyperanalogue" instruments with needles and circular, crystal-look displays.

The classic circular instruments are combined with deep displays and act as a reference to the unique history of Mercedes-Benz. In contrast, other display elements are digitally integrated into a continuous glass trim part.

Information about the seat, for example, can be shown on this digital strip. Map information is also shown in the front area of the strip. Menu content is extended along a digital line which extends to the sides as far as the occupants, who can set their own content ergonomically using touch control.

The front windscreen serves as a transparent display: driving-related data and geographical information is shown across its full width, augmenting the outside world with additional information. This information can be controlled and adjusted by the occupants using gestures.

The luxury padded leather upholstery is a particular highlight. Its traditional look is combined with future technology here - the buttons which would normally be trimmed in leather have been replaced in the upholstered surfaces by miniature "body sensor displays".

The sensors scan the passengers and monitor, for example, their vital functions. As a result, comfort features such as seat climate or the massage function, for example, can be activated or the seat settings adjusted to the passenger. The sensors embedded in the upholstery also record the incidence of light, the colour of the occupant's clothing and the ambient temperature. This information can be used to trigger new, emotional lighting effects in the interior.

The concept car aims to embody the ultimate in luxury, and this is underlined by the fact that the driver can switch to digital/autonomous mode. Another highlight is offered by the floating, transparent centre tunnel, which visualises the drive system's electrical energy flow for the occupants.

Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 (800x566)

Emission-free driving: electric drive system generating 750 hp

The side sills, illuminated by LED light strips, clearly underline the fact that the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 is designed as an electric car.

Thanks to its four compact permanent magnet synchronous electric motors, it features all-wheel drive.

The output of the drive system is 550 kW (750 hp). The shallow underfloor battery has a usable capacity of approx. 80 kWh. This not only allows performance characteristics typical of a sports car (acceleration from 0‑100 km/h in under four seconds, top speed electronically governed at 250 km/h) but also a range of over 500 kilometres according to the NEDC (over 200 miles according to EPA).

Vision: add an extra 100 kilometres to the range in just five minutes

The quick-charge function is also visionary: as a result of DC charging based on the CCS standard, the system allows an impressive charging capacity of up to 350 kW. In just five minutes enough power can be charged to achieve an additional range of around 100 kilometres.

The battery can either be charged via a cable connection at a public charging station or a conventional domestic outlet or, for even more convenience, it can be charged wirelessly, via an electromagnetic field.

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Sneak Preview: New Toyota RND Concept

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Toyota rnd concept

TOYOTA RND: First details of new model released ahead of world debut

Toyota is breaking with motor industry convention by revealing a new product outside the familiar surroundings of an international motor show.

Instead its new RND Concept will make its world debut in the UK on 26th January, ready for fast-track development that should see it changing the face of motoring within weeks.

The first image released today hints at how the concept’s design marks a radical shift in direction for Toyota, taking the “fun-to-drive” qualities of its cars to a higher level. Although presented as a concept, Toyota acknowledges the RND will be unveiled in its production-ready form.

Manufacturing and product supply have been secured and on-the-road pricing has been fixed at a level that will make the RND Concept accessible to the widest possible market.

Toyota is confident, too, that the RND Concept’s impact will go far beyond its own model range, having the potential to transform the look of every vehicle on the road.

President of Toyota GB, Matt Harrison, said: “Full details of the RND Concept will be announced next week, but ahead of the official unveiling I can say that this is something we are proud of and that will make a valuable contribution to the world we live in.”

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The Audi Prologue Show Car

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NEW ERA:  The Audi prologue concept takes to the stage at the 2014 LA Auto Show, premiering a new era of design for the premium brand under the leadership of Head of Design Marc Lichte.

NEW ERA: The Audi prologue concept takes to the stage at the 2014 LA Auto Show, premiering a new era of design for the premium brand under the leadership of Head of Design Marc Lichte.

Audi is launching into a new design era which is being showcased at the Los Angeles Auto Show, with the presentation of the prologue concept car, which the brand says is a ‘signature car’ for Audi.”

Audi’s head of design Marc Lichte says they have “put the sportiest car in the luxury segment on wheels”.

The two-door coupe has a flowing, elegant shape and taut design. The entire front of the instrument panel is a large touch display, and a portion of the user interface operates with a new type of OLED display made of organic LEDs.

The show car’s technology combines power, comfort and efficiency. The 4.0 TFSI produces up to 605PS of power and 750 Nm (553.2 lb-ft) of torque; it accelerates the Audi prologue from 0 to 62mph in 3.7 seconds. Its dynamic all-wheel steering, in which the rear wheels can turn up to five degrees, makes the large couple extremely responsive and stable while driving.

The Audi prologue is somewhat shorter and flatter than today’s production A8, with a length of 5.10 metres, wheelbase of 2.94 metres, width of 1.95 metres and height of 1.39 metres.

A dominant feature at its low front end is a single-frame grille displaying the four rings that is integrated into the automobile architecture. The large radiator grille has been widened much more, and it is positioned lower than on today’s production models. Its strong horizontal effect expresses an image of powerful dynamics. The cross bars have a finely structured diamond pattern, and their ends are split.

The headlights – shaped like wide, flat wedges – are located with their tips above the Singleframe. They present high-resolution Matrix laser technology: an innovation from Audi, which opens up new approaches to headlight design and enables completely new functionalities.

The pupils of the headlights are formed by a projection lens with a laser light source – they generate a matrix that illuminates the entire street in high resolution.

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