Rinspeed, a Swiss automobile manufacturer that has specialized in designing exotic concept cars since 1991, created a mobile office and conference center concept for the Geneva Motor Show. Called the Xchange, the concept takes a stock Tesla Model S sedan and re-imagines it in the mold of business-class commuting–as a sort of quiet, comfortable nook in which you might get some work done or catch up on your sleep as you travel into the office.
In the Xchange, the traditional steering wheel slides out of the way, allowing passengers to pull out a desk for their laptops, swivel their seats to face one another for a 65-mile-per-hour meeting, or even recline and snag some Zs. Featuring seats designed by Otto Bock Mobility Solutions–a manufacturer of medical prosthetics, of all things–passengers can seat themselves in one of up to 20 different positions. Every allowance has been made for comfort in the interior, from extendable leg rests and foot-warming pouches, to built-in 4K entertainment centers.
According to Rinspeed founder Frank M. Rinderknecht, the Xchange was designed to explore the idea that when cars are able to drive autonomously, a lot of our conventional thinking about what driving is will go right out the window. “So far hardly anyone has taken this to its logical conclusion from the perspective of the driver,” Rinderknecht is quoted as saying in the official press release “How will the interior of a vehicle have to be designed to let the now largely unburdened driver make optimal use of the gain in time?”
The Xchange might seem like a strange concept, but when our cars can drive themselves, the idea that a person commuting into the office is driving his own vehicle will likely seem as odd as the notion that a business-class passenger would simultaneously be flying the plane. Once we are freed from the necessity of actually driving ourselves from point A to point B, there are simply going to be better things you could do with your time than staring at the car bumper in front of you.
You can find out more information about Rinspeed’s Xchange concept here.