If you don’t have a nice car and you can’t afford first class on a plane, then long-distance traveling stinks. You can’t stand up and stretch, you music playlist eventually runs out, and airplane bathrooms smell like feet and sadness. What we need is a new, comfortable way to travel; something that gets you where you need to be while not packing you into a can of sardines. Steve Lee of the Aprilli Design Studio in Toronto has an idea: let’s put a hotel room on wheels.
The Autonomous Travel Suite (or “ATS” for short) is a concept vehicle designed to carry passengers on six-to-ten hour journeys while still offering the comforts of a middle-grade hotel room. The ATS contains a sleeping space, a work space, a little kitchenette, a bathroom with a functional toilet and sitting shower, and even a little entertainment nook. Now, you might be thinking “that just sounds like an RV. We already have those.” Too true, but you still have to drive an RV. The ATS, if the name didn’t tip you off, is entirely self-driving. Passengers would input the start and end points of their journey, and the system would work out the best route. Lee also has an idea for “Autonomous Hotels,” a sort of garage/hotel hybrid wherein ATSes can dock and recharge.
The ATS is still just a concept, but Lee believes that self-driving vehicles could be viable by 2021, though it’ll take longer for road infrastructure to catch up to them. I’ll wait as long as it takes as long as it means I don’t have to sit behind a screaming baby in coach anymore.