Lincoln replaced the steering wheel with a ‘chess piece controller’ in its Model L100 concept

You see, the wheel is unnecessary as the vehicle will be driving itself.

Monterey Car Week has been a hotbed of EV debuts this year with unveilings from Dodge, Acura, DeLorean and a host of other automakers. On Thursday, Lincoln revealed the Model L100, its futuristic foray into electrified mobility, which draws inspiration from the company’s very first luxury sedan, the 1922 Model L.

Lincoln Model L 100 concept

Like its pre-Depression predecessor, the Model L100 exhibits a shocking degree of opulence. “Next generation battery cell and pack technologies,” read the Thursday release, will deliver “game changing energy density,” while the steering wheel will be replaced with a “jewel-inspired chess piece controller that captures light and depth by redefining the vehicle controls inside the cabin.” That fancy yoke won’t be much use for actual steering thanks to the vehicle’s theoretical autonomous driving capabilities taking care of the navigating.

Lincoln Model L 100 concept

“Concept vehicles allow us to reimagine and illustrate how new experiences can come to life with the help of advanced technologies and allow our designers more creative freedom than ever before,” Anthony Lo, Ford’s chief design officer, in a statement. “With the Model L100, we were able to push the boundaries in ways that evolve our Quiet Flight brand DNA and change the way we think about Lincoln designs of tomorrow. »

Lincoln Model L 100 concept

Other fantastical design details include animal-free interiors with front row seats that can flip to face the rear passengers (good thing the car’s driving itself), a digital floor and canopy that can project realistic animated scenes onto the floor and ceiling, a full-length hinged glass roof and reverse-hinged doors that open up like a lily. 

Lincoln Model L 100 concept

There’s no word yet on when the production vehicle spawned from this concept will arrive. Unfortunately many of the ideas presented here will inevitably be cut, going the way of Mercedes’ awesome, Avatar-inspired trunk hatch wigglers.

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