Less space! Retractable steering wheel! Sexy ergonomics!
These are the sexy new features of prototypes currently being developed in Michigan’s TRW Automotive. Judging by an endless variety of concepts and current automotive trends, cars are getting smaller. To further economize such tight confines, even more compact car interiors are need. Thus, here comes the retractable steering wheel.
The whole point of the retractable steering wheel is to maximize limited (claustrophobic) space inside a future car. By future car is meant five years from now by the way. So when the car is parked and unused, the steering wheel folds into the sparsely furnished minimalist dashboard.
Also, given that this retractable steering control is no longer a wheel, maybe it should be called a…steering control. Or maybe steerers. Bad idea. Hopefully people don’t star making pew pew sounds when they get their hands on such steering controls. Steering controls—sounds a bit awkward to be honest.
Let the official press release do some explaining too:
The futuristic design of the retractable steering wheel was developed following an internal study for future steering wheel requirements. It features two retractable handles that close fully to create a smaller shape which then folds away into the dashboard – significantly improving driver comfort and accessibility. When the vehicle is started, the steering wheel deploys into the driving position which can be pre-set and saved by any driver into their chosen position.
As concepts go, don’t expect the illustration up north to end up on a car someday. No doubt a lot of tweaking and redesign in general is still necessary to perfect this innovative approach to driving cars.