Automakers love coming to CES to show off wild concepts, and this year’s virtual CES is no exception. One of Cadillac’s interesting concepts is an autonomous pod — but this one isn’t just another autonomous toaster on wheels. Cadillac designed the PAV pod to be a mobile lounge.
The Personal Autonomous Vehicle Concept is a part of Cadillac’s Halo portfolio, and it has some neat tricks. When passengers enter the pod, the car reads their vital signs using biometric sensors. The readings tell the PAV how to adjust the heat, lighting, humidity and aromatherapy.
At first I thought the tiny side windows were absolutely stupid. If I’m being driven around, I want to watch the world go by. But Cadillac doesn’t want the theoretical passengers of this pod to get lost in the outside world, though it did give the pod a giant glass roof. This rolling lounge is designed to bring everyone together. It’s a place to socialize and relax. That makes a lot of sense.
I noticed the interior doesn’t appear to have any buttons or major control surfaces. The environment inside would be controlled by gestures and voice. The onboard AI can also make adjustments as well.
GM shared a fun video in its exhibit of what a night in the PAV pod could be like, and it showed a few more features. The concept apparently has some interior cameras to snap pictures for social media.
It also has a couple of screens. One is in the seating area and displays the route information. The other is a motorized screen that pops up behind the seats to welcome passengers. My favorite feature is the virtual fireplace. Which, I didn’t think I ever wanted a fireplace in a car, but I do now.
Of course, this is all a design exercise of what could be. I could get behind an autonomous party bus.