Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Luxury Cars over the Horizon
Luxury Cars over the HorizonTo engineer a luxury car of the future, today's designers must first conceive of what luxury will mean in the year 2030. Will it just be about the car's curb appeal? Will drivers -- and passengers -- expect not only to be comfortable in their luxury cars but also pampered? If so, then perhaps future luxury will be delivered through tranquility, speed and control.
Tranquility certainly appears to be on the minds of Barcelona, Spain-based car designers Ficosa International. In 2005, Ficosa re-imagined a car's interior in the Senzai. The designers took their cues from nature, including elements like water and wood and even integrating the perception of wind within the car's cabin. Their ideas were based around Japanese Zen gardens.
An illuminated stream, enclosed in glass, falls from the top of the Senzai's dashboard to the rear floorboards, separating the driver from the passenger. On either side of the stream, the floor consists of Japanese-inspired sand gardens, which extend a warm glow to the interior cabin [source: Car Design News]. Raked sand lends a windswept impression to the interior.
But the fabric allows for the GINA's most interesting feature: the ability to reconfigure the car's body. So, for example, if the driver wants the spoiler up, he or she simply presses a button and the spoiler swells beneath the car's fabric skin
Even with concept cars that have been prototyped and put on display, the future of luxury still remains decidedly difficult to pin down. But if any of the ideas being batted around the automotive design industry today make it into production, you may want to start saving up for your 2030 luxury car right now