9. September 2011
Although the Audi A2 concept that will be revealed at the Frankfurt Motor Show is interesting given that this compact—12.47-ft long, 5.54-ft wide, and 4.89 ft-high—four-passenger car is a pure electric vehicle (EV), that’s not what is most notable about this vehicle. In fact, while the company will probably roll out with an EV at some point, more to the point, and more likely to see production sooner rather than later, is that the A2 exhibits a new level of LED lighting from Audi. And this is the real key to the concept car.
For the past few years Audi has set the standard in lighting with its use of LEDs. The folks there probably wish that they’d taken a patent of using the lights because seemingly every vehicle manufacturer, from Chrysler to Mercedes to Kia, is using them now.
So with the A2, the LED headlights are what is known as “matrix beam” and they’re cooler than Carrie-Ann Moss in her leather cat suit. This includes LEDs and microreflectors so the high-beams have a high resolution and a minimal amount of glare. LEDs are used for the low-beams. And there are light fibers used for the daytime running lights.
There is a “dynamic light” that runs below the edge of the window frame that serves as a continuous side-marker light. It pulses on the appropriate side when the turn signal is activated. When the brakes are applied, there is a red bean that flows forward from the tail lamps around to the dynamic light bar.
The tail lamps use sensors to adjust the amount of illumination based on environmental conditions. The rear fog light deploys laser diodes and can actually project a red triangle onto the road surface to provide a warning to following vehicles.
Audi’s standard-setting clearly hasn’t led to any laurel-resting.