Meet the breathtaking Audi Skysphere
Offering captivating and world-class experiences the Audi Skysphere concept car redefines luxury in the future.
Built on autonomous driving, a revolutionary redesign of the interior and a seamless digital ecosystem, it is the first member of a new family of three concept cars. The Audi skysphere concept is an electric-powered, two-door convertible. Its lines signify the brand’s vision for the progressive luxury segment of the future.
The interior becomes an interactive space and the vehicle a platform for exceptional experiences. Designed to give passengers maximum freedom, it offers both grand touring and sports experiences, making use of the model’s technically brilliant variable wheelbase.
Electric motors and a sophisticated mechanism with body and frame components that slide into one another make it possible to vary the wheelbase itself and the exterior length of the car by 250mm. At the same time, the vehicle’s ground clearance is adjusted by 10mm to enhance comfort and driving dynamics.
The driver can choose to take control of their 4.94-metre-long e-roadster themselves in ‘Sports’ mode with a reduced wheelbase at the touch of a button, with the rear-wheel steering ensuring the vehicle remains extremely agile. Alternatively, they can choose to be chauffeured around in a 5.19m GT in the autonomous ‘Grand Touring’ driving mode, while enjoying the sky and the scenery, maximum legroom, and the services provided by a seamlessly integrated digital ecosystem.
When in ‘Grand Touring’ the steering wheel and pedals retract from sight, and the feeling of space in the concept car opens up new realms of possibility. Meanwhile, the Audi skysphere automatically keeps an eye on the road and traffic with its sensor system and drives the passengers safely to their destination.
Conceived and designed at the Audi Design Studio in Malibu, Studio manager Gael Buzyn and his team are the creative minds behind the project. The Audi skyscraper will make its public debut on the legendary fairways of the Pebble Beach golf course in California, as part of the Monterey Car Week. The Horch 853 roadster, a legendary classic model from the company’s own history served as the inspiration for the new ground-breaking model.
The impressive convertible, which is also around 5.20 meters in length, was not only the definition of modern luxury in the 1930s, but also won the Concours d’Elegance in Pebble Beach in 2009. A look under the hood of the Horch reveals an imposing straight-eight engine with a displacement of five litres. When it comes to the drive system, an electric motor positioned on the powered rear axle is responsible for delivering power to the wheels of the Audi skysphere. A total of 465 kilowatts of power and 750Nm of torque have an easy time with the roadster, which only weighs around 1,800kg. The weight distribution of around 60 percent on the powered rear axle results in ample traction and acceleration from 0 to 62 mph in an impressive four seconds.
The Audi skysphere’s battery modules are primarily positioned behind the cabin, ideal for the vehicle’s centre of gravity and agility. Further modules can be found between the seats in the centre tunnel of the skysphere interior. The battery’s capacity is expected to be more than 80 kWh, giving the car a range of more than 310 miles according to the WLTP standard, at least in the economical GT mode.
When looking at the exterior, it is easy to see the similarity between the legendary Horch 853 convertible and the Audi skysphere – 5.23m in length versus 5.19; a width of 1.85 versus 2.00m. A striking difference, however, can be found in their height. The legendary Horch, with its iconic design, towered up to 1.77m depending on the body shape, while the Audi skysphere, ducks down to the road in Sport mode at 1.23m flat, with an optimized centre of gravity and aerodynamics. The concept car pays its respects to the classic model without simply remaining a retro imitation.
With its wide curved and flared wheel arches typical of the brand, the skysphere emphasizes the wide track. Viewed from the side, the proportions are admirable with a long hood and a short overhang. The surfaces of the wheel arches and front hood are organically curved. The rear end was developed in a wind tunnel and combines elements of a speedster and a shooting brake with large glass surfaces in a traditional streamlined design.