Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

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Thread: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

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    Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    http://www.ctvnews.ca/autos/are-we-o...tion-1.3412394

    After 130 years of visual and technological evolution, the car is accelerating towards a genuine revolution in terms of aesthetics, uses, powertrain and capabilities. So much so that it could lead to the sort of creative free-thinking not seen since the swinging sixties. But the results may not be to everyone's tastes, especially as China overtakes Europe as the market that dictates global automotive styles.

    "The 1960s was a huge moment [of change], and cars represented the most visible and tangible aspect of this progress," explains Fabio Filippini. An automotive design veteran with 30 years' experience, he's currently taking a break to reflect on the industry after six years as Pininfarina's chief creative officer.

    "All of this excitement and passion in an era when men started going to the moon came together to create a very futuristic [automotive] design vision."

    It was the decade that elevated the car from a form of personal mobility to a piece of rolling sculpture, an automotive object of desire, but all of that creativity came crashing back down to Earth in the 1970s when increasing safety regulations severely clipped designers' wings.

    So much so that, according to Filippini, it took car companies and their design teams until the first decade of this century to finally hit on the right way of meeting safety standards without compromising on style.

    "It is a challenge, it has been a challenge for the last 10-15 years," he says. "Safety has a huge influence on design, especially at the front of the car. It is still difficult now -- designing the front face of a car is almost like joining the dots and watching the picture appear. Nevertheless, if you look at cars today, they all look different."

    Yet, with the move towards electric drivetrains and the constant development of technologies that will one day take over responsibility for driving a car, could we be about to see a second automotive design renaissance?

    "We are on the verge of a big change," agrees Filippini. "It could be a huge transformation in terms of what we see or know today. There will be certainly an opportunity to [have a renaissance of design] again but it depends on how car companies handle it."

    For instance, designers will no longer need to make space for things like engines or driveshafts and will be able to tear up the traditional floorplan blueprint. "You can displace every component in a free way because they are digitally connected. Eventually the front of the car could be very different from it is today," says Filippini. And that's just the start. As autonomous driving becomes a reality, then every familiar aspect of a car is open to change.

    "If the car is driverless, people have much more freedom. You can imagine the interior totally differently with people sitting in totally different positions. But that poses questions."

    For instance, how can you provide safety systems such as airbags and seatbelts, if no one knows where or how the passengers will be seated immediately before a collision?

    If you are sitting in a traditional position, you can calculate exactly how the airbag and seatbelt will work. But if you give people the freedom to change position, you have to think how the safety has to react in many different positions. How can one test for so many eventualities?

    The definition of a driverless car along with a battery pack that can offer gasoline-equivalent range is still some way in the future, but designers and car companies are going to start their visual adventures now. "We have to experiment," says Filippini. "Little by little, but enough to open up our vision further and further."

    Because to move too quickly could actually alienate consumers. Despite the democratization of industrial design through companies such as Apple and via mainstream car companies employing the sort of creative brains that a generation ago could only be found at Mercedes, Lamborghini or Pininfarina, of course, new designs on the car could drive people out of their comfort zone.

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    Fabio. Isn't he that model guy? Well, I guess that makes sense. Talking about car models. YES WE CAN!
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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    I think the revolution will be that we wont care anymore. Cars will become driverless and we will not own them anymore. We will have a need to go somewhere, put that into our smartphone, a car will appear to take us where we want and will get a charge on our credit card. Cars will become functional boxes, a commodity. I can see tiered pricing for more luxurious models similar to seating in the airline business. Coach for most of us and 1st class for a few or special occasions. First class will be where styling remains and only the strongest of luxury brands remain in existence.

    Sad, but I don't see people caring much once ownership goes away.

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?


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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    the car is accelerating towards a genuine revolution in terms of aesthetics, uses, powertrain and capabilities.
    No, no, arguable, no.

    Aesthetics is done, automotive design is in the 95th percentile of its curve, all that is left is twiddledicking of the details.
    Uses and capabilities are the same with the very minor exception of some technologies... that don't come close to a 'revolution'.
    If the 'powertrain' moves under the floor, there will still be a 'hood' for crash protection due to federal standards

    "The 1960s was a huge moment [of change], and cars represented the most visible and tangible aspect of this progress," explains Fabio Filippini.
    He's off by a full decade. In the U.S., it was the 1950s that saw the largest changes in powertrains and design, and it was the '50s where the highest swing in futurism occurred. Horsepower race, space-age, amenities galore, the performance & sports cars.

    Because to move too quickly could actually alienate consumers.
    Not an actual worry. the 3-box & 2-box approach isn't going anywhere.

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    They certainly are pushing the obtainability of car ownership away from a larger and larger segment of the population, moving everything upscale, to gouge, I mean, create larger ATP's.

    The 1st revolution was making cars affordable, to push for mass production while lowering costs to get more people into car ownership, the 2nd was paying enough to their workers to let even them afford to own a car.

    The 3rd revolution was in the late 50's/early 60's, where design and engine performance drove the American car to an exalted product on a world wide basis.

    The 4th was the including of computers and the digital age of transportation, allowing better control of components and greater horsepower and fuel economy.

    The recent surge in electric cars is nothing new; cars were electric in huge percentages at the turn of the last century.

    Autonomous cars and driver assisted cars are merely a facet of computer integration.



    I think we are in more of a devolution now; exterior design, as has been noted, is nearly completely engineered, interior space and exterior air slipperiness and styling having easily come to their complete understanding and mastery. It's adaptation not always being utilized, however.

    New cars are quickly becoming a thing for only the well healed again, when looked at in terms of operating costs, on road costs, and initial buying prices.

    Loss of manufacturing jobs and other ancillary jobs have shrunken the Middle Class, and manufacturers seem to be chasing their buying demographic upscale to chase this enlarging divide in those capable of affording a new car.

    Deglobalization is another facet of the devolution of car manufacturing, as the hurdle to compete both in their home region and abroad is seen as not needed to still be successful, and perhaps more importantly, more secure.

    In short, cars have come full circle.
    Last edited by Carbide; 05-14-2017 at 07:33 AM.

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    Quote Originally Posted by BlackGTP View Post
    I think the revolution will be that we wont care anymore. Cars will become driverless and we will not own them anymore. We will have a need to go somewhere, put that into our smartphone, a car will appear to take us where we want and will get a charge on our credit card. Cars will become functional boxes, a commodity. I can see tiered pricing for more luxurious models similar to seating in the airline business. Coach for most of us and 1st class for a few or special occasions. First class will be where styling remains and only the strongest of luxury brands remain in existence.

    Sad, but I don't see people caring much once ownership goes away.
    sounds to me like you just described a Camry, its usually driverless.. the automaton at the wheel could not care less about driving.. In other words, its back to the future...



    That wing provides downforce
    Last edited by mbukukanyau; 05-14-2017 at 11:29 AM.

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    As consumers, I think our expectations for car design have been dumbed down considerably. They are mindfarking us with boring, ugly and odd looking cars which are being forced fed to us as handsome. The next mainstream manufacturer which employs beautiful design on their cars will rule the world - mark my words.
    Pony Car: an affordable, compact, highly styled car with a sporty or performance-oriented image and an available V8.

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    Quote Originally Posted by BlackGTP View Post
    I think the revolution will be that we wont care anymore. Cars will become driverless and we will not own them anymore. We will have a need to go somewhere, put that into our smartphone, a car will appear to take us where we want and will get a charge on our credit card. Cars will become functional boxes, a commodity. I can see tiered pricing for more luxurious models similar to seating in the airline business. Coach for most of us and 1st class for a few or special occasions. First class will be where styling remains and only the strongest of luxury brands remain in existence.

    Sad, but I don't see people caring much once ownership goes away.
    I think you will see a LOT of people GIVE UP there PERSONAL appliance for a SERVICE for the MON 2 FRI grind but do NOT see ALL car ownership going away as for a LOT of people it is the LAST step of freedom not to mention a lot of people like "toys" that require a car to TOW them and I doubt GOOGLE will take AND launch your boat for you with there POD + the "loss" of the "pack the bags N hit the road" road trip / weekend at the CABIN
    and for many "loosing" that ability is to much EX in the older generation that grew up around the "freedom" cars offered

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    I've been reading through this and various responses and the articles insistence that driverless and other things are going to become predominant. I have serious reservations and doubts about a lot of this because of the trades and other industry along with so much of small town and rural America, it will not and can not be feasible for most people the way this country is set up and or laid out.

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    ^ Agreed- many think it's going to be a major segment in -say- 15 years. It'll be a lot closer to 50.
    EVs have been here 20 years and they're only 6% of the market.

    The fact is, the modern IC auto isn't 'broken' and there's no horse<car wave coming to displace it.

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    Quote Originally Posted by richmond2000 View Post
    I think you will see a LOT of people GIVE UP there PERSONAL appliance for a SERVICE for the MON 2 FRI grind but do NOT see ALL car ownership going away as for a LOT of people it is the LAST step of freedom not to mention a lot of people like "toys" that require a car to TOW them and I doubt GOOGLE will take AND launch your boat for you with there POD + the "loss" of the "pack the bags N hit the road" road trip / weekend at the CABIN
    and for many "loosing" that ability is to much EX in the older generation that grew up around the "freedom" cars offered
    Quote Originally Posted by 1958carnut View Post
    I've been reading through this and various responses and the articles insistence that driverless and other things are going to become predominant. I have serious reservations and doubts about a lot of this because of the trades and other industry along with so much of small town and rural America, it will not and can not be feasible for most people the way this country is set up and or laid out.
    I think a lot of the hype is the metro/urban based reviewers talking out their azz like they are the mainstream of greater North American driver needs and experience.

    The push from the manufacturers is the hubris to be first and best at new tech, whether or not it is that important to most buyers or not, they'll make more money from pushing it, and they'll try to make you take it so you don't drive a 14" wheel, cloth seat without remote start or fob unlockable doors without getting the 'Convenience Package AND Technology Package AND Safety Package AND Driver Assist Package just to get heated mirrors.

    Most grown ups don't need this stuff and don't want to have to pay for it. Rear Defrost, remote door locks, heated seats are nice, and programmable radio presets; really, all this tech is overblown bullsh!t.

    The worst part is, THEY know we don't need it or want it, and they don't care, it's just bigger ATP.
    Last edited by Carbide; 05-14-2017 at 02:34 PM.

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    Quote Originally Posted by Carbide View Post
    I think a lot of the hype is the metro/urban based reviewers talking out their azz like they are the mainstream of greater North American driver needs and experience.

    The push from the manufacturers is the hubris to be first and best at new tech, whether or not it is that important to most buyers or not, they'll make more money from pushing it, and they'll try to make you take it so you don't drive a 14" wheel, cloth seat without remote start or fob unlockable doors without getting the 'Convenience Package AND Technology Package AND Safety Package AND Driver Assist Package just to get heated mirrors.

    Most grown ups don't need this stuff and don't want to have to pay for it. Rear Defrost, remote door locks, heated seats are nice, and programmable radio presets; really, all this tech is overblown bullsh!t.

    The worst part is, THEY know we don't need it or want it, and they don't care, it's just bigger ATP.
    Something I would like to see is a fair and honest survey with the truth about the gizmos (all the assists and nannies, etc.) that are added in these packages and such then pushed on the buyer and whether they are really used by most people or not and also the frequency of usage. That would speak volumes as for their true value I think.

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    I thought it was just me. After 27 years in the Business, Cars have become just Appliances. But thinking about it deeper, very few of the Young, seem to care about them anymore.

    Sure we do sell some, usually Trucks, Lifted, Tires, exhaust and such. But very few, if any Cars that are anything more than transportation. How much of this is the Manufacture's fault? My guess is more than half, They all look the same! Why must a Malibu, look like a smaller Impala, or a bigger Sonic? Or worse yet, a Focus look like a Dart, or a Forte?

    It started I think, as far back as the Somerset Regal. Why did Buick need a car that small?

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    Re: Are we on the verge of a car design revolution?

    Quote Originally Posted by 09W View Post
    He's off by a full decade. In the U.S., it was the 1950s that saw the largest changes in powertrains and design, and it was the '50s where the highest swing in futurism occurred. Horsepower race, space-age, amenities galore, the performance & sports cars.
    This is where I knew that this guy didn't know what the ^%&*# he was talking about.
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