Startup unveils ‘car of future’ for $45,000

A Chinese startup unveiled a new electric-powered concept car at the Consumer Electronics Shows in Las Vegas on Sunday. Dubbed the ‘car of the future’, it is being presented as a computing device on wheels.

The car is equipped with a digital dashboard that covers the entire length of the front seats, helping its occupants with navigation, entertainment and even health monitoring.

“This is a product which is tailor-made for the future, which is autonomous and shared,” said Daniel Kirchert, president and co-founder of the Nanjing-based startup.

Byton—whose name was chosen to suggest “bytes on wheels”—is funded Chinese investors and led by former executives from Tesla, BMW, Apple and Google.

The car is expected to launch in China by 2019 and in the United States and Europe by 2020.

“This will be the most advanced vehicle in the market as of 2019,” said chairman and chief executive Carsten Breitfeld, a former BMW executive, at a presentation in one of the first media events at the huge electronics show.

The futuristic car will include facial recognition, voice control with Amazon Alexa and 5G internet connectivity to an online cloud to better improve its artificial intelligence.

“It will improve your experience the more it knows you,” said Kirchert.

Byton said their car will have a range of 500 km (300 mi) on a single charge and it would take between 15 and 30 minutes to fully recharge its battery.

The car will be offered with a ‘level 3’ autonomy and is expected to sell at $45,000 USD.

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