Is your next coworking space the backseat of a self-driving car?

Next-gen tech could transform our vehicles into new and improved cubicles.

In TV shows, high-power executives sit in the back of black Escalades, taking important business calls while their chauffeurs navigate city streets.

Three of the same futuristic black car on a blue and white background.

Now picture that, but without the chauffeur. Actually, make it no driver at all.

That could be the future as autonomous cars turn time behind the wheel into free time, per The Wall Street Journal.

And major carmakers are already imagining the possibilities through experimental prototypes:

  • Volvo Cars developed the 360c concept car, which is electric and autonomous, with four different layout options: living room, party, sleeping, and office.
  • Audi’s Urbansphere concept vehicle uses self-driving tech and swiveling front seats to serve as a functional space aside from your home or office.
  • Cadillac designed its two-passenger, autonomous InnerSpace concept car complete with lounge seating and a panoramic screen.

And more major auto brands are dabbling with new technology: BMW and Mercedes-Benz have recently leveled up their automation capabilities.

Driving the future

While we might be a ways off from taking naps while our cars do the driving, widespread adoption of EVs is nearer, and no gas-guzzling motor means more room for innovation.

We’ve already seen automakers introduce smartphone integration and ever-growing screens, but next-gen car tech could get even wilder:

  • Holographic tech could one day allow for businesspeople to conduct “in-person” meetings from their cars.
  • Generative AI might power in-vehicle voice assistants to help not only with navigation but with thinking through work dilemmas on the go.
  • AR, VR, and the metaverse could allow for digital twins of your real office inside your car.

While the idea of your boss’s floating head appearing in the middle of a road trip might’ve already spooked you, there are other challenges to consider with the new tech.

Carmakers will need to figure out ways to preserve safety features — like airbags and seatbelts — while reimagining vehicle interiors.

It feels worth it, though: these concept cars are pretty sick.

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