“For Audi, Copenhagen was the logical choice,” Audi’s spokesperson tells me. We’re standing in one of the air-pressurized spheres that make up the Audi Sphere exhibit, currently making its first stop in Denmark’s capital city. The juxtaposition is dramatic: Set up just at the foot of the Christiansborg Palace—a centuries-old castle and currently used as the house of the Danish Parliament—the three futuristic tent-like spheres make for quite a site. Audi is using the exhibit, currently open to the public until August 5, to showcase “the future of mobility and technology,” as the German luxury automaker sees it. Copenhagen has etched itself into the general European fabric as a progressive and modern city; known for embracing wind, solar, and alternative energy, Audi views Copenhagen as a logical starting point.
The three spheres each feature a dynamic exhibit. In the first sphere, visitors can see Audi’s “space frame” technology—the heavy duty, lightweight construction technology that the automaker is employing as one way to improve overall fuel economy and efficiency for the future of its range. Less weight to push means less fuel expended pushing that weight, so the theory goes. The frame is made of aluminum, magnesium, carbon- and high-strength steels. Audi is not alone, Mazda has championed lighter-weight construction with its new Skyactiv technology, as we experienced driving the 2013 Mazda CX-5 earlier this year.
Another sphere puts visitors up close and personal with an Audi e-tron Spyder. With all of the buzz surrounding the e-tron Spyder Concept, Audi will likely look to make a production version available to the public, though a viable production model isn’t likely to feature the same panache as the Concept. The electric technology could make its way in to a few models within the range. The third sphere touts Audi Connect, and features demonstrations of the Google Earth navigation and Audi’s MMI touchpad. Visitors can also get intimate with the new Audi A3. Audi’s spokesman tells me the A3 as seen in our picture gallery, features interior materials—such as yellow stitching and yellow leather on the steering wheel—that will not yet be available on production models.
At the conclusion of this exhibit, the Audi Sphere will be dismantled, and shipped from Copenhagen back to Ingolstadt, Germany. Audi has yet to decide which city will next play host to the exhibit.