The Tesla Model X will be terrific and Google’s autonomous egg car will change the world.
But neither can match the awesomeness of China’s GAC WitStar that was introduced this week at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show. Not only does China’s Model X lookalike feature a range-extended electric powertrain and autonomous drive capabilities — it’s also equipped with a fish tank!
That’s right — a fish tank! Not since the heyday of “Pimp My Ride” have we seen such aquatic awesomeness in an car. An automotive aquarium! And all of this at the Detroit Auto Show no less.
The WitStar is the latest concept from Guangzhou-based GAC Motors. The futuristic crossover SUV is built on a sedan platform and has a electric driving range of more than 62 miles, reports Motor Trend. When the 13 kWh lithium-ion battery runs dry, the WitStar’s onboard 1.0 liter four-cylinder gasoline power generator will kick in — Chevy Volt-style — to extend the total range to 370 miles. This powertrain setup is expected to achieve 117 mpg.
In addition to the hybrid-electric powertrain, the WitStar’s lineup of autonomous drive tech is also pretty darn impressive. According to Motor Trend, the car will be equipped with a self-driving system featuring laser radar, a high-speed CCD camera, and infrared camera, and GPS.
The car magazine further reports that all data gathered by the sensors, cameras, and GPS system will be amalgamated to create a real-time 3D map of the area around the vehicle. The information will also be used to control various vehicle drive functions, such as acceleration, steering, and braking. Pretty cool.
As for the fish tank, it’s located between the concept’s rear seats, in place of the armrest. Thankfully, GAC decided to used plastic fish instead of the real thing.
Because the last thing anyone wants to see is dead goldfish floating around a concept car.
The fish tank is the attention-getting feature of the WitStar interior. However, the overall pleasantness of the concept’s “lounge-style” interior shouldn’t be discounted. Everything looks sleek, futuristic, and surprisingly restrained.
The WitStar’s defining exterior feature is the pair of massive, Tesla Model X-esque gullwing doors. (Tesla prefers to call them “falcon wings” on the X).
GAC is one of China’s largest automakers. The company currently markets a line of passenger vehicles under the Trumpchi brand. GAC also operates multiple joint-venture manufacturing operations in conjunction with Honda, Toyota, Mitsubishi, and Fiat.