In the light of a recent Reuters report that Apple is actively working on producing its first prototype of a driverless electric car, we thought it would be interesting to list some of the recent advancements in this automotive niche. Environmentally friendly approach, coupled with the inclusion of the omnipresent high-tech elements seems to be the future of commuting and transport in general, the future in which everybody will be able to relax and enjoy, knowing the environment is once again safe from our need to spare our feet from too much walking.
Once Apple’s car sees the light of day, here’s what who it will have to compete with, both in the electric car field and the controversial yet strangely exciting industry of driverless vehicles.
Tesla Model S
Arguably, Tesla is the “Apple” of the transport industry. The company which made electric cars a household topic is responsible for one of the most lauded vehicles of the 21st century – Tesla Model S.
This eco-friendly beast is one of the safest vehicles out there, yet it boasts with some rather impressive performance features, like 360 horsepower, 200+ miles on a single charge, speeding from 0-60 mph in less than 6 seconds and reaching the speed of 125 mph. The Model S is a fully electric powered car, and it’s designed to save all the available energy, which makes it very environmentally “conscious”.
A rechargeable lithium-ion battery is in the heart of another car – Nissan Leaf. Leaf’s performance is not quite as amazing as the Model S’s – 90 mph top speed and “only” 70 miles to cross in a single charge, but this zero-emission vehicle was not really made to be compared to the luxurious Tesla. With it’s base price just below $30,000 and its wide availability, it was created to be a car for everyone.
Chevrolet Spark EV
A great-grandson of Daewoo Matiz, the electric Chevrolet Spark is a 130 horsepower, beautifully designed electric vehicle capable of offering great performance not many of the competitors can offer. Even the basic gas engine model was boasting great fuel efficiency, and the EV promises to satisfy even the pickiest environmentalist with its power saving features.
Mercedes-Benz F 015
Autonomous cars are still relatively rare and all are in the prototype phase, however, there’s already a couple of preview models which attracted the attention of everyone, the most recent of them being Mercedes-Benz F 015. The model’s name resembles the name of an air-plane and we think it’s not too presumptuous.
Honestly, F 015’s design is such a departure from the traditional car design that it might as well be called a plane. Its luxuriously equipped interior, four comfortable lounge chairs which can all face each other (no driver, remember?), six displays to offer all the necessary information and gesture and voice enabled interface are topped only by the best friend of the nature: hydrogen fuel-cell energy source.
F 015 truly IS the car of the future. Unfortunately, that’s where it belongs for now – don’t expect it before 2030.
BMW decided to take a slightly different approach to the electric/driverless market with its much loved i3 – do it step by step and make sure every step is perfect before starting with the next one. Therefore, BMW i3 offers you the possibility to extend the range of your 170 horsepower car from 80 miles to 150 miles with a little help of, khm, khm, not so environmentally friendly, gas engine.
In the driverless department, BMW decided to tackle parking first. Your i3 will have an ability to perform tedious work for your, while letting you enjoy the control of your ride on the road.