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The Asahi Kasei AKXY2 Concept Is a Living Room on Wheels, Sustainable and Smart

It’s best if you’re prepared for whatever life might throw at you. Level 5 autonomy, which would allow humans to travel by car with zero input and supervision, is still a long way from here, but the automotive industry is busy preparing for the moment.
The AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheels 12 photos
Photo: Asahi Kasei Group
The AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheelsThe AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheelsThe AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheelsThe AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheelsThe AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheelsThe AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheelsThe AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheelsThe AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheelsThe AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheelsThe AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheelsThe AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi-functional and sustainable living room on wheels
The consensus right now is that the cars of the future will be fully autonomous and fully electric, but also smart and sustainable. The day will come when we’ll get into cars much like we board trains today, and we’ll be ferried to our preferred destination in total comfort, with zero (or near-zero) impact on the environment, and in the privacy of our own bubble, because we’d only share this space with whomever we want to.

It sounds like a dream, but there’s no harm done in dreaming, right?

Japanese tech company Asahi Kasei Group is here for a bit of daydreaming, imagining the car of tomorrow based on the three Ss: sustainability, satisfaction and society. Seeing how said car of tomorrow will be autonomous, this means you have to have something else for the driver to do, now that he or she has been relegated to the role of passenger. Like other players on the automotive market, Asahi Kasei believes that the passenger car of today will soon become a lounge on wheels. In the case of the AKXY2 concept, make that a living room on wheels.

The AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi\-functional and sustainable living room on wheels
Photo: Asahi Kasei Group
Introduced earlier this month at the Automotive Engineering Exposition 2022 in Yokohama, Japan, the AKXY2 concept is the latest entry in a series the company launched in 2017 to showcase its most sustainable materials and smartest tech. The name might not be the most appealing or the catchiest, but at least it’s easily explainable: it stands for Asahi Kasei X (multiplied by) You (the customer). It is pronounced “ax-ee.”

Like many other concepts of AVs / EVs, the AKXY2 aims to offer the most comfort on the road, with a significant environmentally-friendly approach. This isn’t just a living room you can chill in, it’s a living room you can chill in knowing it did some good for our planet. Plus, it looks good.

The exterior of the concept is clearly delineated in two: the streamlined lower part and the glass upper part of the canopy. Access inside is done via the canopy, which lifts on hydraulics, while the door folds down to become a step. The interior isn’t particularly striking, at least if compared to other concepts of the kind we’ve seen these past few months. You don’t get giant screens, or luxurious lounges or living gardens. You get two seats, two small fold-away tables, and an ottoman, but Asahi Kasei swears the guilt-free conscience outweighs everything else.

For instance, the interior surfaces are covered in Dinamica, a premium microfiber suede that is partially made of recycled polyester, while the seats are Cubit, a 3D mesh material made of PET and partially bio-based PTT. The S-SBR tires are made from bio-based butadiene, which offers low rolling resistance, thus improving fuel and energy efficiency, and reduced microplastics. Other materials used inside are sourced from recycled PET, bio-based PET, ocean waste, or all-natural blends, and many are backlit or semi-transparent, allowing for customized ambient lighting.

The AKXY2 concept is a sustainable, multi\-functional and sustainable living room on wheels
Photo: Asahi Kasei Group
The cabin is soundproof and, perhaps more importantly, clean – and not in the sense that it’s been washed. The concept integrates elements from Asahi Kasei’s Healthy Car Portfolio, including antimicrobial fabrics that curb the spread of pathogens, and CO2 sensors that help maintain optimal air quality.

Asahi Kasei says that the role of the car will change as society evolves, with the main family vehicle becoming “more than just a means of transportation.” “It will be a place to socialize with friends and family, much like the patio of a home,” so the AKXY2 is that patio on wheels. Because it’s a platform meant to showcase potential uses, it’s almost minimal in styling, but the company highlights smart fabrics, smart tech, and ample of space to use as one sees fit.

The AKXY2 concept will be on display next at the Detroit Auto Show in September 2022, K 2022 in October 2022 in Düsseldorf, Germany, and at CES 2023 in January, in Las Vegas.

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About the author: Elena Gorgan
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Elena has been writing for a living since 2006 and, as a journalist, she has put her double major in English and Spanish to good use. She covers automotive and mobility topics like cars and bicycles, and she always knows the shows worth watching on Netflix and friends.
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