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VW ID.3 electric car ‘talks’ to driver through a light system

Today, Volkswagen highlighted a new feature for its new flagship electric car, the VW ID.3. It is equipped with a lighting system that can ‘talk’ to the driver.

The VW ID.3 is mostly special for being the first electric car released on Volkswagen’s new MEB platform that enables mass production of all-electric vehicles.

However, the German automaker is also using the car to launch a bunch of other “high tech” features.

We’ve learned today that one of those features is the “intelligent ID. Light concept.”

Volkswagen describes the system:

“Not only does this car’s voice control obey your every word, the ID.3 also communicates visually with its occupants – thanks to the completely new intelligent ID. Light concept. An LED strip that runs across the cockpit assists the driver by changing colour according to the current function. Once they have settled into the driver seat, ID. Light signals to the driver that the vehicle’s drive system is active and that the car has been unlocked or locked. It accentuates information issued by the driver assist and navigation systems and signals braking prompts and incoming phone calls. In conjunction with the navigation system, ID. Light reduces the stress of driving in traffic. By blinking, it recommends changing lane and can also warn the driver if their ID.3 is in the wrong lane. ID. Light also supports voice control: it responds to the voices of vehicle occupants by sending a light signal. This indicates whether the voice control assistant is responding to the driver or the front passenger.”

It’s hard to grasp how useful the system is exactly without a demonstration, but VW released a few images:

The system will send other color signals like green to indicate a fully charged battery pack and red to warn of a braking maneuver.

Valentina Wilhelm, User Experience Designer at Volkswagen, commented on the system:

“For all its innovativeness, ID. Light functions intuitively by using familiar colours. This use of light, makes the vehicle more ‘personable’ and is a very simple and intuitive way of communicating.”

The automaker says that the exterior headlights also “imitate eye movements.”

As for the other specs and features, you can read our post for the unveiling for the VW ID.3 last month, but the main features are battery pack options up to 77 kWh for 550 km (WLTP) of range, up to 125 kW charging, and a starting price under $33,000 (€30,000) for the base version.

VW plans to start production of the new electric car in November, but VW ID.3 deliveries won’t start until ‘summer 2020’.

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