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Marvel and Disney Transform Audi E-Tron Into Spaceship With In-Car VR at CES 2019

The unique experience features Guardians of the Galaxy characters that will make you navigate an asteroid field.

Audi is currently demonstrating a prototype for “Marvel’s Avengers: Rocket’s Rescue Run” at CES 2019, which is an in-car, virtual reality (VR) experience with augmented reality (AR) that features characters from Guardians of the Galaxy developed specifically for the Audi e-tron.

Created in partnership with Disney Games and Interactive Experiences, the German automaker’s latest CES demo essentially showcases how seamlessly virtual or augmented content can adapt to the movements of an actual vehicle. 

The experience itself currently requires a VR headset and that you sit in an Audi e-tron crossover, which will virtually transform into a spaceship aesthetically reminiscent of Guardians of the Galaxy’s vehicular counterpart. 

Augmenting the film’s design choices atop Audi’s tangible interiors, the experience also provides a virtual outer space scenery outside, while replicating the car’s actual movements within the paralleling virtual scenario. In other words, the car’s driver making a right turn down the street would see Rocket Raccoon virtually steering the spaceship in the same direction. This includes acceleration and more, all in real time.

“Audi, Marvel and Disney Games and Interactive Experiences are celebrating Marvel Studios’ 10th anniversary with an Avengers experience that combines world-class content and innovative technology,” said Mike Goslin, VP of Disney Games and Interactive Experiences. “While this CES demo was developed purely in the spirit of exploration and experimentation, we are constantly evaluating emerging technologies to enhance our stories and experiences.”

The plot of the demo essentially asks you to find your way through an asteroid field alongside Rocket Raccoon, which is expectedly minimal for something as tech- and experience-focused as this. Audi went as far as co-founding a start-up named Holoride to get its in-car VR niche running, aiming to get content developers to create “extended reality formats” such as arcade games, space exploration simulations and educational trips through historical cities. 

“Creative minds will use our platform to come up with fascinating worlds that turn the journey from A to B into a real adventure,” said Nils Wollny, Head of Digital Business at Audi and future CEO of holoride. “We can only develop this new entertainment segment by adopting a cooperative, open approach for vehicle, device and content producers.”

Holoride plans to bring these experiences to the masses in the next three years, with the historical cities simulations sounding pretty appealing. Just think of how much more engaging those mundane trips to the supermarket could be.