If you are a fan of electric vehicles, artificial intelligence, and video games, you might want to pay attention to the latest concept car from Sony Honda Mobility: the Afeela. This futuristic Electric Vehicle (EV) was showcased at the CES 2024 event, partnering with industry giants Epic Games, Microsoft, and Polyphony Digital, and it is packed with technological features that will make your driving experience more immersive, interactive, and fun.
What is the Afeela?
The Afeela is a new concept car that is the result of a collaboration between Sony and Honda, two of the leading companies in the fields of electronics and mobility. The Afeela is designed to be a smart and sustainable EV that can adapt to the driver's preferences and needs. The Afeela is also equipped with artificial intelligence capabilities that can provide the driver with a personal mobility agent, as well as a multi-camera driver assistance system that can improve safety and performance.
The Afeela made a striking entrance onto the CES stage, driven by a PlayStation 5 DualSense controller, capturing the audience's attention. However, Sony clarified that this was a tech demo and not an actual feature for users - Whch is a HUGE step back for Grand Theft Auto fans.
What makes the Afeela unique?
One of the key highlights of the Afeela project is the collaboration with Epic Games and the utilization of Unreal Engine 5.3 for its 3D graphics and visuals. Passengers are treated to the power of its its ultra-wide dashboard display and infotainment graphics, which can offer drivers and passengers a stunning visual experience. With Unreal Engine, the Afeela can display detailed 3D maps, virtual spaces, and augmented reality views of the world around the car, which can have internet-sourced metadata overlaid. For example, the Afeela can show you the history, culture, and attractions of the places you visit, or the weather, traffic, and events of the areas you pass by.
Utilizing advanced sensors, real-time 3D objects are generated, allowing drivers to view their current location from any angle. Epic Games' 3D mapping technology adds playful visual elements, such as monsters popping out of buildings or unique effects on the driving screen.
Microsoft joins the initiative by providing artificial intelligence to serve as a personal mobility agent, enhancing the overall driving experience. Sony Honda Mobility's partnership with Microsoft also brings Azure AI cloud-scale computing tech to contribute to Afeela's development.
Moreover, Unreal Engine plays a crucial role in simulating environments to train Afeela's multi-camera driver assistance systems. The engine's highly realistic graphics improve precision in training visual models and neural network processing, enhancing safety features.
The Afeela Entertainment Experience
Another exciting aspect of the Afeela is its connection with video games, especially the Gran Turismo series, the famous racing simulator developed by Sony's in-house game studio Polyphony Digital. The Afeela is expected to have a video-game-like GPS and navigation system, where the driver can activate the road maps to look like they are playing as they cruise. The data captured from the advanced sensors of the electric car is translated into real-time 3D objects and allows the drivers to view their current location from any angle.
Moreover, the Afeela is also rumored to be featured in the upcoming Gran Turismo 7 game, which is scheduled to be released sometime soon. Sony hinted at this possibility by showing footage of the Afeela racing along a suspected fantasy track from the GT series called 'Grand Valley Highway One'. This means that gamers might be able to get a taste of the Afeela's performance and features before it becomes a reality.
Unreal Engine's role extends beyond visuals, powering the Afeela's ultrawide dashboard display and infotainment graphics. Passengers can enjoy media from Sony's extensive catalog, including TV, movies, and games, keeping them entertained during the ride or while parked and charging.
Will The Afeela Become A Reality?
This is the big question that many people are asking after seeing the Afeela at CES 2024. Unfortunately, there is no clear answer yet, as Sony and Honda have not announced any plans to mass-produce or sell the Afeela to the public. The Afeela is still a concept car, and it might undergo several changes before it reaches the market, if ever.
The Afeela is a remarkable concept car that showcases the potential of electric vehicles, artificial intelligence, and video games to create a new and exciting driving experience. The Afeela is not just a car, but a smart and interactive companion that can adapt to your preferences and needs. The Afeela is also a fun and immersive vehicle that can connect you with the world around you and with your favorite games. The Afeela is, in short, the future of electric vehicles.