This week, the “Dream Cars: Innovative Design, Visionary Ideas” exhibit debuted at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia. Dedicated to the “dream big” history of concept cars, the collection connects us with the innovative designs responsible for our love affair with the open road. While concept cars do not always translate into production vehicles, they ignite our interest by pushing the bounds of reality. Sure we don’t have a flying car suitcase yet, but even today concept cars demonstrate the limitless nature of design ingenuity.
Whether it’s a car that cleans itself, mirrorless cars, a high-speed jetpack, or a lightning-fast electric motorcycle, the need for speed is continuing to result in designs beyond our wildest imagination. If the journey is truly the destination, the way we travel will make going from point A to point B an unforgettable adventure.
After a harsh winter, the line at your local carwash closely resembles the wait for a ride at Disney’s Space Mountain roller coaster. Of course, the finish will last about five minutes before it’s covered in pollen. If only I had a car that would clean itself. By engineering a super-hydrophobic and oleophobic paint, Nissan has done just that. The car repels moisture and dirt by creating a protective layer of air between the paint and its surroundings. Finally, we can enjoy a greasy slice of pizza on the hood with impunity.
Objects in the mirror may no longer be closer than they appear. Not because the laws of nature have changed. No, the mirror itself will disappear. Rear-view cameras have already altered how we reverse, but now side-view mirrors are about to go the way of the DeLorean. Through a series of tiny cameras, Texas Instruments is looking to replace the troublesome side-view mirror. Not only will cameras eliminate blind spots, they will reduce drag and increase fuel efficiency. Mirrorless cars will open new possibilities for vehicle design – like gigantic cup holders, bubble domes, shag carpeting, and tailfins (ok, maybe those last four are horrible ideas).
Sure luxury sports cars with ejector seats and smoke screens come in handy, but discerning secret service agents and galactic bounty hunters truly covet the jetpack. Whether you’re trying to capture a supervillain or avoid a Sarlacc pit, jetpacks travel where tires cannot tread. Attendees at the “Future is Here” festival in Washington D.C. were lucky enough to witness a jetpack, well a four-cylinder rocket belt pack, demonstration inside of the Ronald Regan Building. Roads? Where we’re going, we don’t need roads.
Not ready to leave the ground, but want to feel like you’re flying? Check out the world’s most advanced electric motorcycle. Based in Portland, Oregon Motoczysz founder Michael Czysz dreamt of designing the world’s fastest electric motorcycle. By using SOLIDWORKS, Czysz’s team went from sketch to 200 mph in just months, culminating with a record-setting, first-place finish at the Isle of Man TT.