One of the main attractions in this years CES was not all the digital and virtual assistants; it was real life, hold it, feel it and drive it electric concept SUV from BYTON, a Chinese based automotive developer with its headwaters in Nanjing. It was founded by BMW veterans Dr. Carsten Breitfeld, and Dr. Daniel Kirchert. The Bryton concept takes technology concepts from around the world and brings them together in one beautiful package.
Power Source: Lithium-ion Prismatic Battery Cells with either 71 or 95 KWH
Power Housing: Embedded in the chassis with active cooling
Distance: 325 Miles
Drive: Rear Wheel and Four Wheel
Rear Drive: 200KW Motor in the rear axle
4 Wheel Drive: 150KW Motor added to the front axle
Charging: CCS1 standard (J1772) allowing fast charging in the US.
Software: WiFi upgrades making the platform up to date
Dashboard: 49” curved LCD, gesture screen (Shared Experience Display), allowing driver and passenger gestures control of designated features.
Steering Dash: 8” touchscreen embedded into the driving wheel enables the driver direct access to key controls.
The Integrated Concept
Starting with the steering wheel control, where a standard PRND appears on the right of the screen, so the driver can control the transmission, Byton’s VP Engineering Jeff Chung states that unlike BMW’s gesture controls, Byton allows for more variability. The concept provides four categories; Communication, navigation, entertainment, and health.
The screen will show video calls, large navigation view, allow access to playlists and include communication control through a driver wearable, such as a smartwatch, that will generate metrics for health. The screen will provide the standard pinch and zoom features as well as a cursor mode.
The car comes with airbags, and there is one under the screen on the steering wheel.
In line with the current global developments towards a totally driverless car, the software and hardware packages provide level 3 autonomous control, which means that the car can self-drive in certain situations. The software includes a level 4 infrastructure which means that once governments enable full autonomous driving, the Byton can become a driverless car.
When factoring in the autonomous driving features, the interior design becomes obvious. With large screens in the front and back, front seats that can swivel 12 degrees center ward and enable better full-screen view to the rear passengers. Byton is making a grand statement of bringing passenger comfort in line with driverless car capabilities.
From large interior visibility to leather covered seats, lot’s of space and clear control. Add to this the silence of an electric motor, properly sealed interior from outside sounds and exceptional suspension. This smooth operator provides everything you would expect from BMW veterans out to make an impact.
Byton’s car might look like a force majeure of novel technologies, but in fact, it is a synthesis of many existing technologies brought together in a harmonious co-existence. Since this is the first model of such a car on the scene, we expect many will follow suit, and Byton will continue to lead the pack with innovative design.
An autonomous SUV with a futuristic design and phenomenal interface features, a range of 323 miles and the whopping 49” front display, it’s a bit of a steal at $45,000, and since this is the first model, we expect prices to differ considerably once more versions and competition arrive on the scene.
The automotive industry is a battlefield of innovations and novel technologies. The autonomous vehicle race is still underway, but the concept of transferring the focus to interior design and passenger comfort is the main feature of any driverless car. Byton is the brainchild of BMW experts who realize that comfort as much as control and economic fuel consumption are now the key issues, and no longer the Macho manual fossil fuel guzzlers.
A direct quote from Byton’s vision:
The dawn of the connected car. There are more than 1.2 billion cars on planet earth. While each of us spends on average 90 minutes per day in a car, often stuck in traffic, life seems to be on pause. What if you could live your life in the car just the way you love it? It is time to turn driving into living. This is possible because the automotive industry is undergoing the most profound and most fascinating changes in over 100 years of history, driven by electrification, connectivity, and autonomous driving. Now is the dawn of the connected car, facilitated by technologies including 4G to 5G mobile network, Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, and a shared economy. All of these are in place and start booming. So we are convinced that future mobility is not about improving driving performance. We will replace cylinders and horsepower with connectivity and technology you care about. In doing so, we are creating the next-generation smart device: the car. And we call it BYTON. BYTON lets you do what you want to do. Enjoy entertainment and boost your productivity. Make plans for work and your spare time. Or simply cherish each and every moment in your private place of retreat.