Stellantis’ German brand, Opel, will use the 2023 Munich auto show starting on Sept. 4 to present a concept previewing its future design direction and technology.
Shown for the first time on Wednesday, the Opel Experimental concept is an electric compact crossover whose design focuses on aerodynamic efficiency, clean surfaces, and ornamentation based on lighting and contrasting colors rather than traditional materials like chrome.
Still present is the visor-style grille which Opel introduced with its last design concept, the GT X Experimental from 2018. On the new Experimental concept, the visor grille houses hardware for automated driving features, including lidar, radar, and camera sensors. Cameras mounted behind the front doors have also replaced traditional side mirrors.
Various active flaps are used to improve aerodynamic efficiency, along with the rear diffuser that extends or retracts depending on the driving situation. The wheels, which are wrapped in Goodyear tires made from recycled rubber, also feature active aerodynamic elements, according to Opel.
Opel Experimental concept
The interior continues the theme of contrasting colors. It also features a steering wheel that folds away when the vehicle is tasked with doing the driving, something made possible thanks to steer-by-wire technology. This helps maximize space, which Opel claims is close to matching a mid-size vehicle despite the concept being a compact.
Conventional screens are also absent in the concept. Instead, information or entertainment is presented using a head-up display with augmented reality supported by artificial intelligence. Natural-speak voice activation is also featured.
Opel, which operates as Vauxhall in the U.K., plans to be a fully electric brand in its main market of Europe by 2028. Being part of the Stellantis fold, Opel has access to various EV platforms ranging from designs for subcompact cars right up to full-size trucks and vans. One future EV that Opel has confirmed is a sporty crossover to be called the Manta E. It’s due around the middle of the decade in markets where Opel operates.