Student Designers Explore How Lightweighting Will Drive Efficient Future Cars
Simplifying vehicle structures and new materials aim to improve energy usage during driving.
On the eve of the opening of the 2013 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, The College for Creative Studies opened a new exhibition of work from current Transportation Design students. Representing both undergraduate and graduate programs, the work shown from each was a mix of sponsored projects by automakers both domestic and foreign. While the individual projects ranged from generating new ideas for near term production to what race vehicles might look like in 2050, there was an overall goal to consider ways to make all of the concepts more lightweight.
Bob Boniface, GM’s Director of Cadillac Exterior Design who spoke at the opening night event commented that lightweighting was an important consideration for automakers looking to meet both CAFE and company sustainability goals. The Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards established by the U.S. Department of Energy requires a minimum MPG average to be made across the range of vehicles an automaker produces.
The design projects presented by the students explored ideas relating to both vehicle structures and new material applications. Following is a sampling of sketches, renderings and models.
Click through our gallery to see all the sketches.