Citroen has marked its 100th anniversary with the 19_19 concept, a vision for the future of intercity travel with a focus on extreme comfort.
Named to mark a century since the company was founded, the high-riding EV was designed as a long-range companion to the previously-revealed Ami:One city car and will be capable of fully autonomous driving.
Head of product Xavier Peugeot said the 19_19 was “projecting into the future two of Citroen’s key genes: bold design and 21st century comfort.”
A fully-glazed suspended cabin sits on a new, modified version of Citroen’s Progressive Hydraulic Cushion suspension, seen in current form in the C5 Aircross SUV, with travel lines on the car’s body indicating exactly how much the suspension moves while the car is in motion.
The teardrop-shaped concept was inspired by the aviation world, with an exposed powertrain and roof-mounted LIDAR sensors meant to evoke an aircraft’s horizontal stabilisers. Front and rear LED light bars incorporate Citroen’s dual chevron logo, extending outwards to act as wing mirrors using built-in digital cameras, while the rear-hinged doors contain LCD screens.
The concept rides rides on massive 30in wheels with equally conceptual rubber designed in partnership with Goodyear. Each tyre uses embedded sensors can communicate road conditions to the car when driving in autonomous mode, and is made with a bespoke compound inspired by natural sponge designed to improve traction in adverse weather conditions and reduce road noise inside the cabin.
“This project cannot be presented without thinking of AMI:One,” Head of Exterior Design Frédéric Duvernier explained. “They are very complimentary. On the one hand, you have a small economy car; on the other hand, comfort.”
“I like to think about an egg, because there’s nothing so simple. We tell our designers not to overcomplicate that car - it’s easier to make a newer design by adding lines, but keeping it very simple and working with surfaces is what we really want.”