Toyota i-TRIL Concept: Autonomous EV cruiser
Offering another look at a city-centric vehicle of tomorrow, the Toyota i-TRIL Concept debuted in Geneva. Created by Toyota Motors Europe (TME) in collaboration with the company’s ED² design studio in Nice, it matches clean electric power with the automaker’s Active Lean technology first seen on its i-Road Concept and throws in autonomous driving capability for good measure.
Calling all SMESTOS
In perhaps the narrowest definition of a target audience ever, Toyota says the i-TRIL’s customer is a sophisticated, single, 30-50 year old active female with two children and a vibrant lifestyle who happens to reside in a small to medium sized town (SEMSTO). To that end, the i-TRIL has a 1+2 seating configuration in a diminutive (9.3-feet) package scaled to scoot through traffic with ease. It offers an impressive 13.2-foot turning circle thanks to its ability to lean into corners at a 10-degree angle.
Access to the i-TRIL’s cabin is eased by large butterfly doors with cutouts that extend into the floor and its large greenhouse affords great sightlines. The minimalist cabin includes few conventional controls and no pedals but does feature a stripped-down head-up display. When a human is calling the shots, the by-wire operation of the i-TRIL’s steering, throttle and brakes are all handled using control nodes mounted on the left and right side of the center “manual driving module” while the infotainment and multimedia systems are designed to respond to voice input. When rolling along in autonomous mode, advisory lights on either side of the dash advise that a turn is looming and the direction which the lean-in will occur.
The i-TRIL features a front steer/rear drive configuration that uses custom Goodyear tires with a tread pattern that matches the design of the interior trim. And yes, the Alcantara, fabric and wood-grain floor are all made from recycled materials to promote sustainability. While Toyota offered no specific powertrain details, it did note the goal was to have the i-TRIL deliver a real-world per-charge range in excess of 125 miles.
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