Audi’s futuristic new concept swaps headlights for drones

The AI:Trail quattro, an all-electric off-roader, is revealed at the Frankfurt Motor Show

Audi concept car the  AI:Trail quattro, revealed at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Photograph: Audi/PA Wire

Audi concept car the AI:Trail quattro, revealed at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Photograph: Audi/PA Wire

 

Audi has swapped headlights for drones in its latest futuristic vehicle concept, revealed at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The AI:Trail quattro, an all-electric off-roader, comes with five drones which help guide drivers through dark conditions, in place of conventional low beams and high beams.

Inductive charging points are featured on the roof rack of the vehicle, where the drones can land independently.

The drones can group together when necessary to provide additional light intensity. As well as illuminating the path ahead, the drones can also be used as eyes from the sky, transmitting live video back to the driver’s display.

It remains a concept for now so may never become a reality, but it does offer a glimpse of what motoring could look like in the future.

AI:Trail comes with systems for assisted and automated driving, supported by four electric motors designed to reach a maximum speed of about 130km/h.

“With the AI:Trail, we are showing an off-road concept with an emissions-free electric drive for an innovative driving experience away from paved roads,” Marc Lichte, Audi’s head of design, said.