Just a few weeks ago, we reported that a Sony and Honda concept car was set to be revealed at CES 2023. The two companies hoped to enter the growing electric vehicle market by fusing Honda's legacy building cars with Sony's prowess in the entertainment sector – as seen with the PS5 and the Sony TV range.
That concept has now been unveiled. The Afeela – so-called because feel is at the centre of its design – looks, from the outside, to be a fairly standard electric saloon concept. Fans of the Mercedes Benz EQS will definitely feel at home here.
But thanks to some Sony-designed magic, the car also features a fantastic looking operating system. Previously, we've marvelled over Tesla for having the best car OS on the market, but that could be challenged here.
Inside, the Afeela features a panoramic interface for in-car entertainment. The display allows for control of all the cars displays, and can be used to stream movies and music or play games. Two further displays are mounted to the back of the front seats, which offer the same functionality, independent of the front display. That means everyone can have their own entertainment, without needing to compromise.
The cabin is designed to be an inviting, modern environment, and it certainly succeeds. The design has a distinct minimalist vibe throughout.
What's most impressive, though, is the array of sensors on-board. Walk up to the car and it will open the door for you. Sit in the driver seat and facial recognition will select your profile, adjusting the seat and steering wheel to an appropriate position. The speakers will adjust to provide optimum audio for your height, too.
Once in the car, a further array of sensors will enable the driver to have ultimate control over the driving experience. A total of 45 cameras and sensors allow for complete 360° tracking. The software can sense other road users and road markings, and overlays are being developed for a smart AR navigation system.
On top of that, in partnership with Epic Games, SHM are looking to bring virtual reality to the Afeela concept. Details are scarce, but one image on their website suggests an immersive virtual world replacing the real one that the car is driving through.
The Afeela is primed for early pre-orders in the first half of 2025, with deliveries set to start from early 2026.