[YesAuto Technology] The biggest news in the automotive industry after the Spring Festival is that the annual Geneva Motor Show is cancelled due to the new crown pneumonia epidemic. This is also the first cancellation in the history of the Geneva Motor Show except for war factors. However, with the advancement of technology, webcast conferences have become possible. Although the auto show was not held, many manufacturers still released their new cars step by step. So, among these new cars released recently, which ones can enter the designer's eyes and feel impressed?
Who are the bystanders?
In the past two years, design has become an important part of the new car publicity campaign of car companies. Everyone likes to use a series of stories to illustrate design inspiration. “What's like here, there are unique Chinese elements” stories are not uncommon. In fact, most of these are just to meet the needs of media communication. In the real development process, the designer considers more factors than this.
Therefore, we found a professional third-party design company-Ikona (ICONA), through the perspective of professional designers, to interpret those new cars that are quite topical. In the future series of topics called “The Spectator”, you will see these third-party designers analyze the models that are worth talking about on the market. The opinions, entry points and opinions of these insiders are sharp, objective and true.
If you are worried that the designer of the car company will sell melons to Wang Po and favor your own work, then you may wish to listen to the neutral evaluation from the third party. For this reason, we specifically contacted the Chinese and foreign designers of the Econa Shanghai Design Center.
Don't underestimate this third-party design company. Like Pininfarina, it undertakes a lot of the design work of models that we are familiar with, but due to commercial confidentiality, we will not introduce it in detail here.
● “Renewed” mass-produced car
◆ A new generation of Audi A3
Audi A3 can be said to be the big brother of luxury brand compact cars in China. Compared with the later domestically produced BMW 1 Series and Mercedes-Benz A-Class, it can be said that it has a better market share and sales. No matter how late the hero is, the current domestic Audi A3 is not as good as its competitors in terms of technology, but don't worry, the new generation of Audi A3 has recently ushered in its debut.
The headlights have evolved to a certain extent on the basis of the current Audi A3. If the old model still has a certain degree of restraint, then the new generation of styling has become bolder, more open and more sporty. It looks tougher than the old one.
The stronger wheel arch shape further increases the muscularity of the side of the body, just like a muscular man in formal wear, who looks younger and more energetic than the current model. Now the wheel arches have also become part of Audi's latest family design language, symbolizing the Audi brand's quattro four-wheel drive technology. Of course, the change of the wheel arch is also directly related to the change of the side waistline of the car body.
This side design not only retains the big outline of the current Audi A3, but also makes the whole car more fashionable and sporty. It not only retains the traditional model genes, but also becomes more beautiful because of the younger and sportier positioning of the model. For young consumers, it will be more attractive than the current Audi A3.
Compared with the rear of the current model, the new generation of Audi A3 has a fuller design and a sharper shape inside the lamp cavity. It not only incorporates the design language of many new generation Audi models, but the shape of the rear bumper is also formed with the front bumper. It echoes very well and is perfectly integrated with the overall design language.
The suspended air-conditioning outlets on the left and right of the dashboard can not help but remind people of the Urus, another high-end brand of the Volkswagen Group, the SUV model of Lamborghini. This is a design method that can only be seen on models that emphasize driving pleasure. The through-type air-conditioning vent design for the passenger seat can also be found on the Audi A4. Coupled with the larger central control screen, the family design language is blown away. You don't need to look at the LOGO to know that this is an Audi.
In general, the appearance of the new generation of Audi A3 highlights the sense of movement, and the various changes make people vaguely feel the genes of the Audi brand. This approach is very clever. The changes in the interior can be said to have turned the Audi A3 into a completely different car. Not only is the technology more obvious, but it also gives people the desire to drive. It seems that as long as the price is right after domestic production, Audi can be one step ahead in the luxury compact car market.
◆ New Mercedes-Benz E-Class
As a mid-term change model, the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class still has some changes, but this change is not big, but it is not small, and it does not bring any surprises when it meets everyone’s expectations. Generally speaking, the word “stable” is at the forefront.
The new family-oriented headlights and the Chinese grid profile believe that everyone has seen a lot of the various Mercedes-Benz models that have been upgraded in the past two years. This update of the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class in this regard can be said to return to the latest “family.” design”. However, the headlights on the current Mercedes-Benz E-Class are equally successful as those designed by China Net, and everyone knows how popular they are in the domestic market. As a successful product at the design level, the title “Little Maybach” speaks for itself.
Starting from this generation of Mercedes-Benz CLS-class, the taillights of the sedan series have become slender, like the later Mercedes-Benz A-class and Mercedes-Benz CLA-class, they all take this route.
Of course, the new taillight design has mixed reviews. Some people find it unsightly, not as dignified as the current model; but some people feel that the new taillight design looks more sporty, and the vehicle looks wider and more imposing.
In fact, it is normal to find no difference in the interior image, because in addition to the shape of the steering wheel, it seems that the entire interior part has only the difference of “the physical clock on the instrument panel has been cancelled.” Of course these are only the parts visible to the naked eye.
Generally speaking, the exterior design of the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class can only be regarded as a “family front face”, and the more changes are the brand new software. After all, the mid-term facelift is not a drastic reform, but a patchwork to make it more competitive on the basis of the previous one.
● A concept car close to mass production
Although in theory there should be a big difference between a mass production car and a concept car, many manufacturers now test the market’s response by releasing a very similar concept car before mass production. This is the best among the most recent mass-produced cars.
◆ BMW i4 concept car
The BMW i series concept car has always been a relatively special existence, because compared to other concept cars under the brand, the i series is generally closer to the state of mass production, and there will not be too many very exaggerated and advanced designs. The same is true for the BMW i4 concept car unveiled this time. Although it has Concept in its name, its state is not far from mass production.
For an electric car, the size of the BMW’s iconic “dual kidney” grille used in the i4 concept car is quite big, and the visual center of gravity of the entire front face is almost all on the grille. But does an electric car really need such a large amount of air intake? Obviously not.
As a four-door coupe, the side profile of the i4 concept car is naturally different from that of the 4 series concept car with only two doors, but this side line of the body is actually not the first time we have seen it, because 2017 The BMW i Vision Dynamics concept car unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2009 is exactly the same.
The BMW i4 concept car uses a large area of champagne gold and high-grade gray, two colors that are very suitable for electric vehicles, and some parts are embellished with blue and chrome that can represent “new energy”, and the overall atmosphere is not lost. It is high-class and can give people a strong impression of “electric car”.
But overall, the interior of the BMW i4 concept car is not as strong as the sense of innovation brought by the BMW i8 and BMW i3 when they were unveiled. The impact on people is not great, especially when everyone is used to large sizes. The moment of the curved horizontal screen does not make people feel refreshing.
Although the BMW i4 is still a concept car, it is very close to the state of mass production from the design and engineering perspectives, so it will not be like those concept cars that explore the design direction. Although its design has somewhat subverted the appearance of traditional electric vehicles, the overall proportion coordination is maintained well, and I believe that entering the mass production stage will not make people feel too obtrusive.
◆ Polestar Precept concept car
After being independent from Volvo, Polestar’s two production cars Polestar 1 and Polestar 2 have a strong Volvo style. After all, the concept cars of the year were all products released with the Volvo brand LOGO. Therefore, even if the Polestar brand launched a number In 2015, everyone did not see the difference between it and Volvo.
It seems that it inherits the style of Swedish furniture. The interior of Polestar Precept gives the impression that it incorporates many technological elements in practicality and home furnishing. Although it was born from Volvo, it looks more mature, plus With a more complete choice of interior materials, I believe that if it goes on the market, it will take away many potential customers of Tesla.
● A concept car that explores the future direction
In addition to the almost mass-produced concept cars, there is also a concept car to explore the future development direction of the brand. Therefore, these concept cars are sometimes quite different from their brands. These are all normal. After all, the future No one can explain things clearly, and sometimes it may not be a good thing.
◆ Hyundai Prophecy concept car
Hyundai Prophecy concept car is such a product. Except for the LOGO, no matter from which point of view it is viewed, it does not look like a product from Hyundai Group, so we can conclude that this is an exploration of Hyundai's future design direction.
The proportions of the whole car are very harmonious, and the lines are very clean. Except for the rear wing, there are no very abrupt design elements in the whole car. Although the appearance of the rear wing is a bit strange, this is the unique impression of the era when it was reproduced: the prominent rear wing is the representative of performance.
There are indications that this Hyundai Prophecy, which does not look like a modern one, is just an exploration product for the future design route launched by the group, but with this re-enacted appearance and nostalgic interior, I believe it will give the post-80s generation. It brings a lot of touches, after all, the design is of reincarnation.
◆ Renault MORPHOZ concept car
As large French manufacturers, Renault and PSA two major groups launch many concept cars every year. Although these concept cars may not be mass-produced in the end, they can often bring very novel inspiration to the field of automotive design. The MORPHOZ concept car presented by Renault this time is such a product.
The headlights seem to have a through-type design, but it seems that only the lights on both sides will shine, and the hollow area in the middle is just a decorative piece. Is this really the case? Not really! Because Renault MORPHOZ concept car has a function similar to Transformers: it will get longer!
First of all, the vehicle can be freely lengthened and shortened. This is already a very novel idea. What's more commendable is that the Renault MORPHOZ concept car has a very good-looking shape whether it is in the standard length or in the extended state. And it is not the wheelbase after changing the B-pillar as we usually do, but the front and rear of the vehicle change at the same time.
In general, the Renault MORPHOZ concept car not only provides new ideas for the functionality of the vehicle, but also brings new inspiration to designers in terms of body material and color matching. As a major exporter of concept cars, Renault did not disappoint this time.
to sum up:
As participants in this field, car designers often see new cars from the perspective of consumers are very different. Factors such as design concepts, vehicle proportions, difficulty in mass production, and the use of color materials will affect designers’ perceptions of The rating of a car. In this issue of The Bystander Geneva Special, we have taken stock of new cars that have been released recently that can impress insiders. Which cars are you interested in mass-produced and listed, do you hope designers can comment? You can leave a message in my editor blog, maybe the protagonist of the next issue of the bystander is the one you like!