a unique sliding steering wheel concept

a unique sliding steering wheel concept

Volvo has just filed an astonishing patent illustrating a concept of a steering wheel sliding from right to left.

the letter volvo

© Provided by Auto Moto
the letter volvo

Volvo has just filed an astonishing patent illustrating a concept of a steering wheel sliding from right to left.

It is not uncommon for manufacturers to file patents for more or less unusual and revolutionary technologies. If this is not always synonymous with term production, it is above all a way of protecting an idea, which could be used a few years later. Anyway, as car enthusiasts, it is always interesting to look at these documents, which can sometimes hide real nuggets, like the one we are talking about today, and which comes to us from in Volvo. The Swedish brand is indeed known for its many innovations, starting with the seat belt in its modern form, patented by the manufacturer in 1959 and installed as standard for the first time on the car. Volvo Amazon the same year. This time, the invention that we present to you should not save lives, but nevertheless deserves that we look at it, in particular for its aspect at least original.

And for good reason, it is a new system of sliding steering wheel, capable of crossing the dashboard from right to left. A device which does not necessarily seem essential at first glance but which could prove to be very practical for the manufacturer, thus optimizing time and costs on the production line. Indeed, depending on the markets where the vehicles in the range are sold, they must be adapted with the steering wheel located on the left or on the right. With this system, the production chain would then be simplified, while making it possible to overcome many constraints during vehicle design. For its part, the gearbox would then be directly connected to the steering wheel, with probably a selector installed on the latter, as is already the case on certain models, in particular at Mercedes or Tesla, via a control unit allowing you to choose between forward and reverse gear, among others.

Towards the autonomous car?

What about the pedals, which cannot be moved? These would simply be replaced by an intelligent floor, which would then be pressure sensitive, like physical controls. This floor would then adapt to the position of the steering wheel, and could make it possible to offer several configurations for the passenger compartment, with for example a single seat located in the center, like the McLaren F1. But this sliding steering wheel, of which all the technical details related to its operation have not yet been detailed, could notably find its use in the development of the autonomous car. The driver’s action would then still be necessary sometimes, and it will then be possible to pass the steering wheel to the passenger (who has the driving license, of course) if the driver is reading or resting.

It remains to be seen whether Volvo will ever offer this astonishing sliding steering wheel in a production vehicle. In the meantime, we could first discover a concept car using this technology, in order to see what it would give in a more concrete way.

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