- AURA is an all-electric concept car designed for nature, with sustainability at its core and efficiency driving its design
- The AURA concept car is a long-range electric vehicle built to publicly demonstrate the skills and capabilities of a consortium of British businesses, recognised as leaders in the development of low emission vehicles, Astheimer, Potenza Technology, BAMD and Conjure – utilising Spark EV’s technology
- NVN funded project brings unique and cutting-edge HMI technology connecting the driver to the vehicle and its surroundings to make range and charge point anxiety a thing of the past
- The full vehicle reveal will be at the CENEX Low Carbon Vehicle Show at Millbrook on the 22nd – 23rd September
A consortium of British automotive and technology companies has revealed an all-new electric two-seater sports car demonstrating to the world what electric vehicles in the future could look like.
AURA is a road-legal concept vehicle which features sustainable composite materials, novel battery technology, drivetrain efficiency and iconic design optimised by aerodynamics. The vehicle has been designed around a unique and cutting-edge human machine interface (HMI), to connect the driver with the vehicle and its surroundings to eradicate charge point and range fears commonly associated with electric motoring.
A 10” touch centre infotainment system and a 5” circular self-levelling display in the middle of the steering wheel are at the heart of the HMI. Using the latest Android Automotive Operating System, Spark EV’s technology has been integrated to demonstrate the next generation of HMI software and apps, including machine learning software which monitors the weather, your driving style, and the environment to provide near-perfect energy optimisation mid journey. This ensures the driver will never run out of electricity unexpectedly or wait on a charge point for longer than is necessary.
On-board energy optimisation data from many electric vehicles on the roads today can be up to 100 per cent inaccurate as they do not analyse enough data sources outside of the vehicle (such as the weather conditions or location). This can create distrust among users of electric vehicles with range anxiety still being a major barrier the industry needs to overcome.
The vehicle is also connected in real-time to the AURA cloud service, which enables the creation of a digital twin of the vehicle to provide the driver, should they wish, with historical telematics to analyse their driving style of regular routes to maximise range and minimise their impact on the surroundings.
Chris Tingley, CTO of the company behind the HMI system, Conjure, said:
“We know there’s huge potential for HMI systems to better connect the driver with the vehicle and their surroundings in the future. Until now, many HMI programmes, software, hardware, and user experience have been developed separately. We believe our approach of developing them as one element is a major steppingstone towards vehicles of the future.”
Justin Ott, CEO and founder of the company behind the energy optimisation technology, Spark EV Technology, commented: “To successfully introduce electric vehicles to the masses, we need to make sure they provide drivers with the correct information on how far they can travel on a single charge and eliminate range and charge point anxiety.
“The AURA project has enabled leaders in their respective fields to work together to build a working demonstrator to showcase to the world how the industry can use technology available today to help overcome these barriers.”
AURA is part-funded by the Government’s Office of Low Emission Vehicles through the Niche Vehicle Network. The full vehicle reveal will be at the CENEX Low Carbon Vehicle Show at Millbrook on the 22nd – 23rd September.
About the AURA project
AURA is a collaborative project with Astheimer, Potenza Technology, Conjure and BAMD to demonstrate each of the company’s discipline capabilities through the creation of a fully electric long range, open-top concept car. Using a Spaceframe chassis as the donor platform, Astheimer is developing the exterior and interior design, Potenza Technology the drivetrain and unique twin battery system, Conjure the innovative HMI system, utilising Spark EV energy optimisation technology, and BAMD the sustainable materials for the body panels.
Astheimer Design, a studio focused on delivering mobility solutions for a sustainable future, designed the vehicle to coexist with nature. The pure surfaces of the exterior were optimised for drag reduction using CFD, while comprehensive body engineering ensured the vehicle was manufacturable and road legal despite a demanding budget.
About potenza technology
Potenza Technology, a brand of FPT Industrial, are specialists in the design and build of high energy battery packs. For this project, a novel twin-pack battery architecture has been developed, controlled by the fifth generation of the Potenza Technology, Battery Management System. Coupled with a direct drive powertrain and a low rolling resistance vehicle setup, the AURA Concept will emphasise leadership in long-range EV development.
Conjure, an interface design, innovation and digital technology company, and a global leader in digital products for the Automotive sector, made use of Android Automotive to deploy their bespoke screen and control layout including a truly unique self-levelling steering wheel display. The purpose-designed UX/UI focuses on the unique attributes of EVs, even delivering live aerodynamic feedback to the driver from sensors embedded in the nose of the vehicle.
BAMD Composites, pioneers in the manufacturing of high-performance natural fibre composites, sought to lightweight the bodywork through the selective use of innovative BCOMP material. The dark, pigmented weave of the material on the striking rear bumper has been left visible, highlighting that sustainability can be visually aesthetic as well as good for the planet.
AURA – www.auraconcept.co.uk
AURA Instagram – instagram.com/aura.concept.car
Spark EV Technology – www.sparkevtechnology.com
Astheimer – www.astheimerltd.com
Potenza Technology – www.ptech.co
Conjure – www.conjure.co.uk
BAMD – www.bamd.co.uk