Three years ago, Sony surprised the world with a concept car it named Sony VISION-S. The car was supposed to be a platform to showcase Sony’s technology for automobiles. But a year later, it underwent public road testing in Europe and finally, in 2022, it decided that it is actually going to make a car and it will be doing it under a joint venture with Honda, under Sony Honda Mobility.
Fast forward to today, at CES 2023, Sony Honda Mobility (SHM) revealed the brand of the EV and it is called AFEELA. In addition to announcing the new brand AFEELA, Sony Honda Mobility Inc. (SHM) also unveiled a prototype that will be the base of the production model. SHM said it plans to start taking pre-orders in the first half of 2025 and commence sales by end of 2025. Delivery is expected to start in Spring 2026 in North America.
So why is Sony getting into making cars? Well, because there is money to be made, of course. SHM believes that the world has reached an inflection point where the elements of a car have shifted from power and performance to software, networks, and user experiences (read: where the money is). We heard there may be subscription plans to unlock certain features. That’s right. It is going to be like smartphones and tablets where there will be subs and in-app purchases. I am not liking the idea.
Anyways, the AFEELA will feature a “Media Bar” on the outside to express itself to the surrounding people, and on the inside, it has a clean, minimalist but futuristic cabin. SHM aims to achieve Level 3 autonomy under limited conditions and Level 2+ driver assistance in urban driving.
The car will use SoCs from Qualcomm Snapdragon Digital Chassis for 800 TOPS max computing performance and the prototype is outfitted with no less than 45 cameras and sensors inside and outside. In-car cameras and ToF sensors are used to detect the driver and the car’s situation to help avoid accidents. There is also a plan to integrate augmented reality for navigation using SHM’s sensing technology, and a bunch of entertainment options.
Anyhoo, like the BMW i Vision Dee, AFEELA is just as futuristic that it will be hard to believe until it actually materializes. Meanwhile, you can pick up more details from the newly minted brand’s website.
Images: Sony Honda Mobility.