Whether you want to drive or just ride, Audi figures there will be an autonomous solution for everyone.

Not everyone is keen on the notion of cars driving themselves. That's especially true for those who enjoy driving – which we suspect are a vast majority of the people reading this article right now. Most tend to think of autonomous technology as a singular issue, though Audi has pointed out numerous shades of gray in the autonomous world. Speaking to Australia’s Car Advice, Audi board member for technical development Peter Mertens suggested autonomous cars will come in a variety of flavors for different situations, including those involving some measure of sportiness.

 

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“It’s one of the key questions we have to answer,” he said. “If you look far into the future and look at autonomy, in particular level four or five, sportiness becomes a different dimension. Specifically at five because there is no steering, there are no pedals, and it becomes, sort of, probably impossible to differentiate that vehicle in terms of sportiness. But coming in terms of autonomy and the future different use cases, there will be cars more focussed around use cases.”

At least part of the reason for this discussion stems from the automaker’s autonomous presence at the recent Frankfurt Motor Show. Audi showcased a range of autonomous vehicles, including the Aicon Concept which represented level 5 autonomy with its complete lack of traditional control systems for the driver. Some see this evolution as a death knell for exciting, fun-to-drive cars, but Mertens points out that autonomous systems aren't an all-or-nothing deal

“There won’t be this one car you use for everything,” he explained. “There’s a car I use in the city and there’s a car I use for commuting and there’s a car that I use for fun and driving itself. And that sportiness comes into play there very much again.”

Of course, not everyone can afford multiple cars. Never the less, seeing a manufacturer recognize different kinds of driving environments and styles and bridging that to an autonomous future is reassuring that at least some measure of motoring passion won't disappear.

Source: Car Advice

Gallery: Audi Aicon Concept