After it surprisingly revealed a new car at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in 2020, Sony has taken the covers off a second model at this year’s show — and it looks like it might be planning to build them.
The new car is called the Vision-S 02, with the original Vision S model renamed as Vision-S 01. It is, unsurprisingly, a battery-powered electric SUV, built on the same platform as the sedan revealed in 2021.
Although Sony hasn’t revealed any hard figures for the 02, it will likely use the exact same layout as the 01 model. That car was confirmed to use a pair of 200kW (268hp) electric motors, with one driving each axle, combining to produce 536hp with all-wheel drive.
While the 02 is likely to weigh a good bit more than the already fairly hefty, 5,200lb, 01, it’s still likely to have a 0-60mph time in the region of five seconds.
Sony hasn’t officially revealed battery pack capacity or range for either car yet, but details in the teaser videos for both cars give us plenty of information.
The Vision-S 02 shows a range of 333km on approximately 80% battery charge, and a recent average consumption of 320Wh/km. That roughly converts to a 133kWh pack — roughly the same as the 125kWh we calculated for the Vision S in 2020 — with a range of 416km (258 miles).
Sony is likely to use proprietary battery technology for the car, and 125kWh is a fairly common capacity, so that all adds up nicely.
Like the original car, the 02 majors on connectivity and entertainment. The car features the same suite of 40 sensors, combining visual and lidar to analyze its environment and offer the most advanced driver assists currently possible. Sony has been conducting “Level 2+” tests of these systems, and having previously noted that “Level 4” (self-driving within certain areas) could be available with updates to the 01, we’d expect the same of the 02 as well.
Full 5G connectivity means that passengers will have access to Sony’s “Bravia Core” streaming services, as well as being able to use remote-play with their home PlayStation consoles, and stream games too — perhaps using the upcoming Spartacus service.
Sony’s already used the 5G capabilities of the Vision-S 01 to demonstrate a remarkable “remote drive” feature. This saw a driver in Japan — using a Logitech G29 wheel — driving the car while it was at a test track 6,000 miles away in Germany.
While the original Vision S looked to be a tech demo for Sony’s sensors, it now appears that Sony is a great deal more interested in becoming an automotive manufacturer too.
As it announced the Vision-S 02, Sony also revealed it had created a new company called Sony Mobility. This new company, it says, “intends to explore entry into the EV market”, meaning that both of the cars we’ve seen so far could actually make it onto the public roads in a not-too-distant future.
That could of course lead to a highly recursive situation in which a player will drive their Sony car in a PlayStation game (maybe even Gran Turismo 7) while actually being driven about in the exact same car…
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