To paraphrase Dr. Evil: Is it so hard to get a car with frickin' laser beams for headlights?
Turns out it's not. At the 2014 International Consumer Electronic show in Las Vegas, Audi showed they had done just that. When they introduced the Audi Sport quattro laserlight concept, the car had lasers for headlights. That's right: Lasers. For. Headlights.
Lasers are pretty cool and exciting. Headlights, on the other hand, are not. You probably don't even think about car headlights unless you're playing padiddle (learn how to play here) or explaining to a cop that you're on your way to the auto parts store to get a replacement bulb and hoping he buys it so you don't get a ticket.
Headlights may not occupy a lot of your headspace, but advances in headlights, like the Audi Sport quattro laserlight concept, save money and lives. According to the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI), cars with adaptive headlights, which are headlights that turn with the steering wheel, illuminating curves in the road ahead, have 10 percent fewer property damage liability claims to their insurance. Further, cars with adaptive headlights have lower injury rates in single car crashes than do cars with conventional headlights. Brighter headlights help drivers see objects on dark roads sooner, even if they don't swivel with the car's steering wheel [sources: HLDI Crash; HLDI Adaptive].
So, to borrow another line from Dr. Evil, the Audi Sport quattro laserlight concept won't help you put British secret agents in an easily escapable situation while you assume that everything will go according to plan, but it will provide enough light for drivers to see twice as far as they could with LED headlights. Add to that the fact that the car behind those headlights has a 700 horsepower gas-electric powertrain and sweet styling, and suddenly laser headlights are just one of the cool things the Audi Sport quattro laserlight has going for it.
In the following pages, we'll learn why Audi is synonymous with headlights, why the Sport quattro laserlight concept has a strong off-road history and just how far a car with frickin' laser beams for headlights can let you see.