Auto Visions from Shanghai
A Closer Look at 5 Impressive Concept Cars
text | Ztephen Lee
edit | Richard Kelley, Henry Lau

The largest automotive industry exhibition in China, Auto Shanghai 2017 runs from 21 – 28 April at the National Exhibition and Convention Centre in Shanghai.

Organised every other year in China since 1985, Shanghai is the oldest and most respected international automobile industry exhibition in Asia. The event gathers companies and organisations from all around the world to showcase their latest concept designs, as well as demonstrating their latest products and services. With big names such as Mercedes-Benz, Škoda, Lynk & Co, Audi and Volkswagen, here are the 5 concept designs that impressed us this year.

Mercedes-Benz Concept A Sedan

Mercedes-Benz debuted its Concept A Sedan with the goal of offering the ultimate luxury compact model in response to increased consumer interest in smaller automobiles. The all-new four-door concept sedan measures 179.9 inches (456.9 cm) in length and 73.6 inches (186.9 cm) in width, wrapped up in a sleek exterior. The UV paint-coated headlights glow in different colours depending on the type of light hitting them, and its dark-tinted privacy glass and a panoramic glass roof provides a way to see without being seen.

The release date has yet to be confirmed.

Škoda Vision E

The Škoda Vision E is an electrified vehicle designed in the Czech Republic, with styling references to the new Kodiaq SUV and distinctive features emphasising the futuristic feel of the model. The Vision E measures 4,688 mm long, 1,917 mm wide and 1,550 mm tall, while rides on a 2,850 mm wheelbase.

The Vision E uses Volkswagen’s latest EV-focused MEB platform. Liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery cells in the floor provide power for two electric motors generating a combined 225 kW, which delivers a potential driving range of up to 500 kilometres. The inductive charging system also allows the Vision E to recharge by parking on a specialised pad rather than through a plug-in cord.

The production of the Vision E is still to be confirmed.

Audi e-tron Sportback Concept

The e-tron Sportback Concept by Audi is an all-electric SUV that slots in between the brand’s Q5 and Q7 regarding size. It sports two electric motors (one at the rear axle and one at the front) to enable the “electrified Quattro” system, transforming the high-performance coupé into a Quattro in typical Audi style. With the battery’s energy rating of 95 kilowatt-hours, concept’s range should exceed 500 kilometres (310.7 miles). Total horsepower sits at 429hp, increasing to 496hp in “boost” mode, taking the e-tron Sportback from 0 to 100 km/h in just 4.5 seconds.

The production version of the e-tron Sportback will be available in 2019.

Lynk & Co 03 SUV Concept Car

Lynk & Co – owned by China-based automotive company Geely, announced their 5-door crossover car called Lynk & Co 03 during the Shanghai show. The modern-looking concept vehicle was once again developed in conjunction with Volvo (just like the 01 SUV concept car that debuted last October). Not surprisingly, the Lynk & Co 03 uses a similar chassis as the 01 SUV.

The future car will be sold on the internet, and Lynk & Co also aim to develop a pay-as-you-go subscription model, where users pay for vehicle usage on an on-demand basis instead of buying the car. The company is also intending to enter the car-sharing market, so the 03 Concept will have a dedicated in-car share button. Furthermore, it will come with a lifetime warranty, as well as free data usage for connectivity purposes, since the car will always maintain a connection to the internet.

As of now, there is no word on when the 03 SUV Concept Car will become available.

Volkswagen I.D. Crozz

Last but not least is the I.D CROZZ by Volkswagen, a conceptualised sporty, interactively-designed zero-emissions vehicle.

Following the I.D Concept and I.D Buzz Concept, the newcomer to the I.D series uses the MEB (Modularer Elektrischer Baukasten) platform, purposely designed for electric cars. It measures 4,625 mm long, 1,891 mm wide and 1,609 mm tall, and rides on a 2,773 mm wheelbase.

VW says the I.D CROZZ will deliver a top speed of about 180 kilometres per hour (112 mph) with a range of 500 kilometres, or about 311 miles. Its high-performance battery can be recharged to 80% capacity in 30 minutes using a fast-charging 150 kW charger.

The I.D CROZZ also features a fully autonomous “ID Pilot” mode – the car will drive with autopilot when the driver touches the VW badge on the steering wheel for three seconds. Instruments and controls of the car will be fully digital. Important information appears in the driver’s visual field via an augmented reality system that also allows gesture control of the transparent panoramic sunroof.

The ‘ID CROZZ’ is scheduled for production in 2020.