► CES 2020 news round-up
► Car news from the tech show
► At-a-glance rundown
CES – also known as the Consumer Electronic Show – was once just about the latest smartphones, computers and robotics but it's transformed into just as much of an automotive space as a motor show. Technology has become one of the main differentiators between brands, with car makers rubbing shoulders or even competing in similar spaces as the likes of Amazon, Apple, Google and more.
Keep reading for our CES 2020 news round-up.
CES 2020: our A-Z guide of new cars and tech
Audi's offering rides in Las Vegas in the smallest of its AI cars, the AI:Me, to the media. In turn, the brand is demonstrating some of its urban mobility features in a live setting. It's autonomous and connected (duh) but uses technology like eye tracking, VR technology and more to enhance the passenger experience. Sick of buzzwords, yet?
Dynamic Matrix LED
Demonstrated on the new e-Tron Sportback, Audi is at the forefront of lighting technology yet again (although, in this case, not first). Ingolstadt's latest LED technology update incorporates projectors used in video production into the matrix LED headlights, allowing for lane-changing notifications for cars ahead and even more active lane assistance.
i3 Urban Suite
This electric living room on wheels, BMW says, is designed to focus entirely on the passenger, not the driver. So much so that the i3 Urban Suite comes with a massive armchair for a passenger seat, a coffee table and a footrest, with the small EV's unique door configuration being taken full advantage of. As usual with the i3, the Urban Suite uses recycled materials. BMW is even offering rides in one to those at the Vegas-based show.
FIAT CHRYSLER AUTOMOBILES
Fiat's super-funky city car concept, first revealed at the 2019 Geneva motor show makes its way to CES. Interchangeable bumpers, interior panels and roof designs all feature on the concept.
Jeep 4xe models
The Wrangler, Renegade and Compass models will be the first to feature electrified powertrains, with the rugged brand debuting the 4xe name for its hybrid range. The Renegade and Compass models first arrived at the 2019 Geneva motor show under the e-volution tagline.
The brand that originally brought you the Karma range-extender (although the brand has changed hands since then) is back with an all-electric SUV called the Ocean. The brand wants to hit Tesla where it hurts, with this five-door crossover having a Model 3-rivalling $30k price tag after the USA's federal tax credits. A solar roof, fully-vegan interior, 300-mile range and a 2021 on-sale date are all pinned down. Something called 'California Mode' has been teased, too, where the Ocean opens every window (including the solar sunroof, C-pillar windows and the tailgate window.
Personal Air Vehicle (PAV) and Purpose Built Vehicle (PBV)
Hyundai is dreaming of a faraway future with its flying car concept, the PAV, and a customisable pod-like thing, the PBV. The former is bringing the old idea to life of using airspace to alleviate traffic congestion in cities.
Merc's latest concept car is technically a tie-in with the next Avatar movie. A battery with 'graphene-based organic cell chemistry' is housed underneath a flowing design similar to that of Merc's grandiose Maybach concept cars. The rear half of the roof contains 33 flaps (supposedly like scales on a reptile) and the wheel/axle designs allow for the car to move sideways. We'd quite like some of what Mercedes is on, please.
For the third year in a row, Swiss car company Rinspeed is debuting a variation on its 'Snap' idea - designed as a way of cut down traffic by deploying a series of vehicles that are affordable because they are modular. The MetroSnap variant is a vision of the short-distance taxi or even a pop-up shop or mobile parcel delivery station. Rinspeed is serious about this, having filed for patent protection for the skateboard platform underneath.
In what was a rather unexpected turn at the 2020 Consumer Electronics Show, Sony announced it has been developing a prototype electric vehicle named Vision-S. This isn’t just vapourware CGI reserved in the hard drives a Sony employee’s computer, either – it’s a real, moving prototype of a technology area that the electronics giant wants to move in on.