Future within your reach, Icona Design Group debuts futuristic showcars with strategic partners at 2019 Auto Shanghai
Shanghai-16th April 2019-The 18th Auto Shanghai officially starts. Icona Design Group makes its appearance with Chinese leading technology and automotive OEM enterprises including JD Logistics, Meituan, and Chery New Energy, and debuts a range of innovative products.
At Auto Shanghai this year, 2019 German Design Award winner Nucleus concept, Space-Pod, a small autonomous robot designed by Icona for the Chinese leading e-commerce platform Meituan, and JD Autonomous Logstics Vehicle gather into a strong formation of showcars at NECC Shanghai 8.1H Pavillion. Among them, JD Autonomous Logstics Vehicle is a joint effort between JD, Icona, and Chery New Energy, which premiered first time in the world; Nucleus has its Shanghai debut after a successful journey in Genava, Los Angeles and Paris; last but not the least, it is also the first time Meituan Space-Pod is showcased anywhere else but 2019 CES in Las Vegas.
Icona Nucleus, the ultimate self-driving living room
Nucleus represents the synthesis of futurism and a human-centered mindset, and embodies Icona’s vision for the future of mobility. The Level-5 autonomous driving system designed by Holomatic fades the driver seat into history. During design process, Holomatic equips Nucleus with sensors that are already mature at the moment, inlcuding cameras and millimeter wave radar, and introduces Velarray laser radar by Velodyne as an essential part of sensors on the whole vehicle, hence the requirements of sensor performance and vehicle styling are both satisfied. Inside the vehicle, the absence of a driver does not only mean the absence of a steering wheel and a dashboard, but the opportunity for a new understanding of mobile living spaces, where the focus is no longer the road but the destination.
Mr. Samuel Chuffart, Icona Design Group VP & Global Design Director, says “This revolutionary concept vehicle demonstrates a paradigm shift for future mobility and has already been the source of inspiration for several other concepts which have followed its introduction in Geneva last year.”
Technology should be felt but not seen and so a “less is more approach” has been used, resulting in a fluid and sculptural body that combines the needs of both aerodynamics and ergonomics. The body of Nucleus is 5.25 meters long, 2.12 meters wide, 1.75 meters tall, equipped with four 26-inch wheels. Its powertrain system applies the cutting-edge in-wheel motor technology, each wheel is equipped with one L1500 in-wheel motor developed by Icona’s partner Elaphe, the maximum output power can reach 110kW, and the peak torque is 1500 N.m. Meanwhile, the semi-transparent trim boards of the same colour as the body replaces traditional window glass and thus make the convenience for passengers to enjoy the view on the road with discretion.
Inside Nucleus, there are 6 flexible seats that are able to form a centeral sofa. Seated inside Nucleus will bring you a deja-vu of ultra-luxury hotel living room. With an advanced infortainment system, the passengers can deal with business issues or simply relax no matter how long the ride is.
Meituan Space-Pod brings high-quality life aesthetic
Meituan Space-Pod, as the first robot product specially designed for take-out delivery scenario, is aimed at autonomous delivery service inside buildings,
The Space-Pod is equipped with 3 separate drawer containers to help up to three receivers on each journey, and it communicates with sound and screen while using face recognition. It aspires for a simple modern sculpture rather than a robot which is too personified. In the same way as modern art is making its presence felt in today’s architecture, Icona wants AI to be an aesthetic yet non-obtrusive helper with a welcome presence.
The world premiere of JD Autonomous Logistics Vehicle
JD Autonomous Logistics Vehicle is the first on road Level 4 autonomous logistic vehicle from JD and has been designed by Icona and developed together with JD and Chery New Energy. With a maximum storage capacity of 4000L, it leaves no space for driver but all for goods. Under the guidance of current traffic laws, JD Autonomous Logistics Vehicle is able to spontaneously plan its own route and reazlie multiple functions such as obstacle recognition, automatic car following, and V2X.
At present, it is intended to operate within JD’s premises and cover the distance from JD warehouses to JingDong delivery stations and JD terminal delivery robots. In the future, a vehicle like this could be used on campuses, in industrial parks and other controlled private and public areas, and potentially also (after tomorrow) on public roads, starting with those roads with dedicated lanes.
Regarding design, Icona strives to convey a simple, technical and yet friendly message. Its seemingly symmetrical front and rear, together with lights on each corner,describea non-traditional automotive language. Rather than a directional design, it has a stable and agile attitude together with a non-threatening iconic identity, which is like no object in our urban landscape. The design is approachable, not intimidating. Its light communication signature faces outwards rather than forwards: the intention is to provide an immediate and intuitive connection for the logistic personal and the people adjacent to the vehicle.
Hand in hand with strategic partners for a brand-new chapter in future mobility design
After signing strategic partnership with Meituan in 2019 Las Vegas CES, Icona updated the list with another essential partner JD, a giant in Chinese Internet scenes.
Mr. Xue Nan, Global VP of Icona Design Group, says: “JD, as a leading Internet enterprise, is a pioneer in building a smaer logistics system domestically, and has profound experiences in technology, data and mobility scenario operation. Chevy New Energy is an iconic Chinese brand who is a key player in new energy industry. With two new strategic partners, the crossover cooperation of Icona has officially entered the second chapter. In the future, Icona will continue to contirbute to the the constructio nof autonomous logistics system, and create more possibilities for smart mobility with our partners.”
Mr. Yang Jing, Senior Director of JD X Department Autonomous Product, adds that: “JD X Department has been devoted to the development and application of autonomous vehicle and correlated hardware. In regard to autonomous vehicle, we have been focusing on solving the issue of “Last Kilometer”, and have already undergone two years of actual delivery by logistics robots. To fulfill our vision, JD’s autonomous vehicle must have the best design and most reliable performance, while keeping it sustainable and environment-friendly, hence the choice of Icona and Chevy New Enerngy as our partners.”
The diversification and enrichment of Icona’s strategic partners mark that Icona not only has the design value offered by traditional design studios, but also has a full range of design thinking methodology for future mobility product framework. Confronted with the full automonous era in the future, Icona will also dedicate itself with partners for more classic design to come.
Icona Design Group
Founded in 2010 at Turin, Italy, Icona Design Group has developed into a world-leading automotive design company with three independent design studios in Europe, North America and Asia-Pacific.
Icona is dedicated to blending contemporary industrial aesthetic into classic Italian automotive design philosophy. With the support of strong resources in engineering research and prototype development at headquarter Turin, Icona is able to offer all-round, cross-cultrual vehicle develoment and design services for customers from all around the world, and help them realize the best aesthetic of mobility.