Frankfurt 2011: Volvo gives an insight into the future with ‘Concept You’

Frankfurt 2011: Volvo gives an insight into the future with 'Concept You'

Following on from the reveal of the Concept Universe earlier in the year, the Frankfurt Motorshow marks the debut of an evolution to the Concept Universe now called ‘Concept You’ – and gives another insight into the future design and technology of Volvo’s Cars. Both concept cars are being used as design studies to obtain input from the global car buying public to find the ultimate design of the next large saloon from Volvo.

“Concept You gives a good indication of what you can expect from our next large sedan. The blend of contemporary Scandinavian design, exquisite craftsmanship and intuitive technology will appeal to luxury car buyers all over the world,” says Stefan Jacoby, President and CEO of Volvo Car Corporation.

The Concept You, combines a sleek coupé-like exterior with a luxurious high-tech interior that keeps the driver in command via intuitive smart pad technology. Concept You’s luxurious interior gives luxury sedan customers a full experience of the craftsmanship and intuitive technology that will be the hallmark of future Volvos. The Concept You sits on a new scalable platform and despite its luxurious positioning, is powered by a new four-cylinder engine.

“The most valuable input has been used in the development of the Concept You. This car features a more daring, coupé -like profile than the Concept Universe, while the front moves towards a more classic Volvo look,” explains Peter Horbury, Vice President Design at Volvo Car Corporation.

He added, “The fastback profile mirrors a strong trend among European buyers. With growing signs that Chinese “taste buds” are moving rapidly in the same direction, our main aim is to explore how daring our next large sedan should be in order to be a global success. We are very eager to hear what people think about the Concept You.”

The Concept You radiates several aspects of Volvo Car Corporation’s new, customer focused “Designed Around You” strategy:

  • It is a large, luxurious sedan with a new, sculpted Scandinavian form language that also honours the sweeping, elegant lines of classic Volvo models.
  • The inspiration from – and cooperation with – a number of world famous brands demonstrates the level of exquisite craftsmanship customers can expect from future Volvo models.
  • The concept car reveals how Volvo’s new Scalable Platform Architecture (SPA) opens up dynamic design possibilities – on top of the technological and industrial advantages.
  • By bringing the latest intuitive smart pad technology into the car, Volvo Car Corporation emphasises its ambition to lead the development of super-functional connectivity features in cars.

The luxurious interior of the Concept You features a blend of intuitive smart pad technology and first-class craftsmanship.

“The Concept You explores new territories in our search for the ultimate intuitive car that makes the owners manual a thing of the past. Smart phones and smart pads have brought mobile infotainment into a new era. Here, we use a number of touch-screens to replace buttons and controls in order to make the driver totally connected, totally in control. The technology also helps us to create a refreshingly uncluttered interior,” explains Peter Horbury.

conceptYou I1 Frankfurt 2011: Volvo gives an insight into the future with Concept You

The Concept You control centre consists of four main areas; a digital Driver Information Monitor (DIM), a head-up display on the windscreen, a touch-screen in the upper part of the centre console and a touch-screen between the two individual rear seats. The wood/leather steering wheel has aluminium and glass paddles with integrated touch-screens.

The touch-screen in the upper part of the centre console remains in sleep mode until the driver looks at it. A hidden infrared camera registers the eye movements and information is displayed on the screen.

Another sensor registers hand movements and triggers the Infotainment system’s control mode. The possibilities vary depending on whether the screen is approached by the driver or by the front passenger.

“Certain functions, such as surfing the Web, are only accessible from the passenger side while the car is rolling. The technology knows who is the present operator and adapts itself automatically,” says Peter Horbury.

The driver can “flip” data from the central touch-screen to the head-up display and can exchange data with the rear passengers. A light guide in the free-floating centre console indicates file transfer.

The Infotainment system also integrates a high-end sound system from Alpine. It features the unique “FreshAir” subwoofer – a not yet released technology that uses the air outside the car to create the ultimate listening experience.

The sound system consists of small, optimised units that considerably cut weight – while still producing a better sound than today’s systems.

The car’s fastback silhouette is emphasised by the 21-inch polished aluminium wheels with a twisted twin-spoke design and tyres from Pirelli (275/30/21).

Up front, the Concept You grille – which has a more classic appearance than the Concept Universe – features details with the same beautifully polished craftsmanship.

“The design of the wheels, the grille and details in the innovative headlamps have been inspired by the exquisite works of world-famous Danish design house Georg Jensen. Their precious items capture the essence of Scandinavian design. Uncluttered, organic surfaces and superb craftsmanship that radiate timeless luxury,” says Peter Horbury. He adds:

“This eternal beauty of Georg Jensen design is what we are aiming for with the whole concept car. Just like the finest luxury goods, this design should feel handcrafted and durable enough to stand the test of time.”

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