Our Dream Car: Mercedes AVATARPosted: June 24, 2024

During CES 2020, I had the opportunity to see Mercedes’ new concept car: Concept AVATAR. Yes, this futuristic car is inspired by Avatar, James Cameron’s breathtaking film.

The car is 100% autonomous, meaning that we can relax in luxury with a high tech experience since you never have to touch the wheel. Instead, the car drives itself by relying on our biometrics and artificial intelligence (AI).

However, aside from amazing bragging rights for possessing such an amazing looking car, this car is an example of the possibilities of environmental innovation as a result of using new technologies to ensure efficiency , using graphene as a power source, and sustainable production.

Environmental Technology

In regards to environmental technology, Mercedes showcases their environmental innovation through their use of the internet of things (IoT). This allows devices to communicate across the internet without prompt. Put differently, a fleet of self-driving electric cars can use their ‘local’ AI to connect to the IoT in order to prevent accidents, and to ensure safe driving.

One benefit is that in theory, by allowing AI to take control of cars, they will tend to operate with significantly greater efficiency since the cars will communicate with one another to ensure that it does not need to use more fuel than it needs. A side, but noteworthy benefit is that the large energy demands for IoT promotes renewable energy industry growth since it is the cheapest (and most efficient) form of energy on the planet – which brings 3:1 more jobs than the fossil fuel industry.

While the integration of the Internet of Things with cars is hardly unique to Mercedes, this car demonstrates that we do not have to compromise on luxury to be environmentally innovative.

Graphene Battery

A second area that Mercedes Concept Avatar car demonstrates environmental innovation is through its proposal to use graphene, rather than lithium ion as a battery. Despite a lithium ion powered car (assuming on a clean electric grid) emits very little emissions, the extraction and disposal processes, combined with being a rare metal make it a long-term viable alternative to fossil fuels.

However, since graphene is derived from carbon, the question then becomes is determining a circular cycle. To begin, in 2019, scientists figured out how to extract graphene from carbon dioxide. This means that through methods such as carbon sequestration, we can now extract graphene to be used as fuel. For the end of life of graphene, researchers have found promising results in 2018 which suggested that graphene can be bio-degradable. Furthermore, if these developments in graphene are given their full potential through governments, institutions, and businesses, then this car would be an example of an ultimate superstar.

Dinamica® Material

Perhaps the greatest environmental innovation is the third area is Dinamica, an Italian made ‘ecological microfibre’. Since this fibre is composed of recycled polyester (e.g. clothes and fibres) and recycled PET (bottles, plastic, etc), rather than extracting and manufacturing new raw materials, carbon emissions are reduced by 80% compared to traditional leather. As a microfibre, the material is extremely luxurious, slip resistant, and non-toxic. I hope that this inclusion inspires other car companies to follow in Mercedes’ footsteps in incorporating circular design within their products.

Conclusion

The Mercedes Concept Avatar is everyone’s dream car. It is our dream car. Why? It is incredibly stylish, yet it showcases hip new environmental techniques, practices, and technologies. The electric car is expected to be approximately 48% of all new cars sold in Canada in 2030, add $24 billion to the GDP, therefore , this car indicates what the electric car can achieve. II hope that to further speed up electric cars, Mercedes works with the industry and governments to ensure that such cars can become a reality – because I want our dream car. I want it today.

Thank you Mercedes.