In a move that suggest the new concept could provide solid clues to the way it will advance the design of its future passenger car line-up, Mercedes-Benz says the new MPV 'marks a new conceptual approach' for the company.
Eschewing traditional doors, the Mercedes-Benz concept features a large, single kerbside door. It opens upwards and comes to rest parallel to the roof. At the rear, the tail lights are integrated within the outer edges of an oval rear window, providing it with a clean and unadorned look.
Various sections of the Vision Tokyo’s exterior - including the large grille and individual spokes of its large 26in wheels - are illuminated in blue, a colour Mercedes-Benz suggests provides clues to its emissions-free, hydrogen-fuelled driveline. Various sensors and stereo camera technology required to provide the Vision Tokyo with the ability to drive itself are primarily housed within a fin mounted on the roof.
Mercedes-Benz has also provided the Vision Tokyo with 'deep machine learning' and intelligent predictive engine processes. “With each journey, it becomes more familiar with its occupants, their likes and preferences,” the firm says.
Continuing the theme explored on the F015 Luxury in Motion concept, Mercedes-Benz’s advanced design team has provided the Vision Tokyo with a futuristically styled interior designed to take full advantage of hands-off autonomous driving technology by providing a face-to-face cabin environment for its occupants.
Entry is via the single door, while conventional seats are eschewed in favour of a semi-circular couch that accommodates up to five adults. They are able to ‘chill and chat without having to worry about steering a way through the traffic’.
The cabin sides are lined in leather and adorned with LED touchscreens. Together with an overhead projector module, they provide an advanced multi-media experience with various displays projected as a 3D hologram within the interior space.
A seat facing in the direction of travel can be released from the front of the couch should the Vision Tokyo require manual control, allowing the driver to operate the steering wheel, which can also be moved automatically from a 'standby position' into a proper driving position.
Power comes from an updated version of the hydrogen fuel-cell electric hybrid system initially showcased by the F015 Luxury in Motion. Details of the layout and output of the driveline remain under wraps, although it is claimed to provide the Vision Tokyo with a range of up to 609 miles – some 118 miles courtesy of electricity stored in a battery via either plug-in or inductive means and a further 491 miles on the electricity produced on the run by the fuel cell stack.