Sony unveiled its second electric vehicle, the Vision-S 02, at CES 2022. The Vision-S 02 is a 7-seat SUV designed to compete with Tesla’s Model X.
At CES 2022, Sony unveiled the Vision-S 02 electric SUV, as well as announced the formation of a dedicated mobility company to advance Sony’s electric vehicle development plans. The Vision-S 02 is an SUV-body type that replaces the Vision-S saloon prototype that we’ve been seeing for a while. Sony Mobility Inc. will be in charge of the development and marketing of future Sony vehicles.
The Vision-S 02 is a large vehicle with seven seats and a minimalistic design language. The front has a raised lip with a black grille flanked by air-scoops that feed air to the wheels, similar to its predecessor’s design. The headlamps are leaf-shaped, with a full-width LED DRL strip in the middle that forms the Sony Mobility logo; there are no side mirrors, just Sony’s CMOS sensors to help you navigate the roads. It has a laid-back SUV stance and a curved sloping roof that ends in a fastback style. The vehicle is 4.9m long and rides on 20-inch alloy wheels.
Sony’s expertise in screens comes in handy, as they have fitted the dash with not one, but three displays side by side embedded inside a single slab, with additional screens on the rear seats. The center console also has a screen that can be used to access various functions, and the rest of the cabin is clean and minimalistic. Sony has also used its audio expertise and embedded speakers inside the seats to provide a 3D-Surround experience.
The Sony Vision-S 02 has a long list of features, some of which include a 5G enabled system, 40-sensor supported Level 2+ ADAS, video-game streaming on the go via Playstation, and a slew of safety features aided by the sensors. Cameras, LiDAR, radar, and ultrasonic sensors were used to create the ‘Safety-Cocoon,’ which allows the car to park and drive itself. Additionally, in-cabin cameras keep an eye on the occupants and adjust climate control, as well as futuristic lip-reading technology that will allow accurate verbal instructions.
The all-wheel-drive system on the Vision-S 02 is powered by a dual-electric motor setup in the front and rear. The motors are rated at 268hp and can propel this 2.5-ton car to speeds in excess of 180kmph; the 0-100 time has not been announced, but it should be close to the Vision-S 01’s 4.8 second time. Both the front and rear suspensions are double wishbone.
Sony has also announced plans to establish Sony Mobility Inc. by mid-2022 to investigate its entry into the EV market. With the Vision-S family of vehicles, Sony CEO Kenishiro Yoshida believes the company is “well-positioned” to redefine mobility.
Following the announcements of Xiaomi, Oppo, GM, Apple, and many other well-known market players expressing interest in entering the Electric Vehicle space, Sony’s Vision S 02 is a glimmer of hope for entry into the EV market. It’s been two years since Sony teased its own electric vehicle, the Sony Vision-S 01, and now it’s been updated. Sony revealed that its future car will be built on hardware, software, and services model, and automakers have a great opportunity to build out the future of smart cars around this concept. So, if any of these players decide to build a smart car, it is clear that competition will be fierce. Tesla, GM, and possibly Sony, as well as the rest of the automakers, will follow suit. However, if the smart car model revolves around innovative hardware, a solid operating system, and excellent software and services, it remains to be seen who proves to have successfully executed this market approach and could become a formidable competitor in the smart EV market. As a result, it remains to be seen whether Sony’s entry will be noticeable, and whether this “creative entertainment company” will be able to “redefine mobility.”