Interaction Exploration & Design for Audi Outpost 2040
Urban city dwellers can easily lose touch with their naturalistic values and passion for motoring due to their living environment.
As a team of industrial, interior, and UI/UX designers, we are going to deliver a well rounded Audi Outpost experience for the year 2040.
Outposts are portable, recreational retreats dropped in remote outdoor locations for a limited time. Accessible via road-trip from major urban cities.
My job was to design interactions for our car and interior of Outpost cabin. My goal was bringing not just a set of trendy UI, but also a well-rounded experience to Audi Outpost.
We provide opportunities for people who live in the city but love to experience outdoor activities.
The original design of our car is a four-seater with 3 passengers and single driver (This design was later ditched because we also wanted include at least one passenger in the front row for him/her as an off-road driving assistant).
In this earlier draft, I mapped the display and control surface based on our (car) interior’s package design.
Driver will have a panoramic display showing navigation and vehicle information. Since our driver will be driving off-road, touchscreen won’t be a good choice. We thought tactile controllers, like physical knobs, would work better. There will be one control knob on each side as well as two control dials on the steering wheel.
A wireframe and screen-flow I did for our original knob control idea.
The smart table serves as a control and display surface for the passengers. They can access a variety of controls and information on the table such as navigation, climate control, and entertainment.
In order to create more room in the cabin, we had an idea to fold and hide the table when it’s not in used. The table will be hidden under a shell. The shell serves as an arm rest as well as a touch control surface.
Road trip (autonomous) mode During road-trip mode the car will tell passengers about nearby vista spots they may be interested in. They can tell the car to go to those spots by pressing the “GO” button using gesture control.
Off-road (AI assist) mode During off-road driving mode, the car will display virtual gauges as well as driving lines and hazard markers to assist its driver. If the driver is new to off-roading, the car will provide driving tips.
In off-roading a spotter is the second set of eyes to help a driver navigate difficult obstacles. We study hand signals used by spotters because we want to create a virtual spotter to replace the human one. We were thinking this could be done by using sensors on the drone or around the car.
After the research and sketch, I made a short demo video to showcase how the virtual spotter works.
Spotter indicator hidden
When there’s no spotting needed, nothing will be shown on the display.
Throttle and right steering indicator shown
When the throttle indicator (green) shows up, the car is telling the driver to push down on the accelerator paddle. The indicator will disappear when there’s enough acceleration and the driver can let go of the paddle. The steering indicator (yellow) works the same way. It shows up when there is steering needed. It would disappear when there’s enough steering.
Break and left steering indicator shown
When break indicator (red) shows up, the car is telling driver to step on the break until the indicator disappear.
I made this UI style board for our midterm presentation. It showcased to our instructors and sponsor about the look we are going after for our final UI design.
Our sponsor, Gael Buzyn, commenting on the style board during our midterm presentation.