Automotive Concept Cars

Concept cars is a term that the majority of car owners or drivers know nothing about. I had always thought that a concept auto was the clay model that is made for a new car style. That’s nowhere near close, because concept cars are actual real cars built and ready to drive. A concept vehicle is a show car or prototype meant to be driven around to showcase a new concept, style, technology, etc.

Concept vehicles are usually shown at the big motor shows throughout the world. They’re shown to consumers to gauge their reactions to radical design changes or concepts. The idea of the concept or show car was developed by the GM designer Harley Earl. The concept auto is a real car, but it never goes into production directly. It would have to changed for safety, practicality and costs to be a production vehicle instead of just a concept vehicle.

Concept cars have extreme or radical engines, designs, materials, layouts, doors or things not found on production cars. Most concept cars never get past the scale model or computer drawings. A small numbers of concept vehicles are actually fully functional and some can’t even move faster than 10 mph safely. After the concept vehicle is done being used, the cars are usually destroyed but some survive in company museum or in storage. The 1954 concept car Lincoln Futura was in a custom car shop for years until it was used as the Batmobile in the Batman TV series in 1966.

There are some concept cars that are well known for one reason or another. The Buick Y Job was designed in the 1930s by Harley Earl and is considered to be the first concept vehicle. The General Motors Le Sabre built in 1951 introduced the 12 volt electrics and aluminum 215 ci V8. The 1959 Cadillac Cyclone was one of Harley Earl’s last designs. Chevrolet Volt is one of the first plug in hybrid electric vehicle concept cars.

A concept vehicle that I would never want to see in production is the Ford Nucleon, a nuclear powered car. MIT worked with Frank Gehry to develop the MIT Car concept vehicle. Pontiac’s Bonneville Special was Pontiac’s first two seater sports car and debuted in the 1954 Motorama. Another Pontiac is the Club de Mer an all stainless steel sportscar from 1956. The Lancia Megagamma was the prototype for the current minivan. Volvo’s YCC was the first car designed entirely by women.

Automotive Trim Development

Automotive Trim Developments is actually a company that specialise in providing customers with interior trim solutions for the marine, automotive and aviation markets, they have capabilities of bespoke design. ATD have the expertise and staff to develop straight form CAD and concept drawings all the way through to the finished product or production ready pattern.

Their main strength and focus lies in the manufacture and development of leather products however their large scale projects and extensive ‘hands on’ experience give them the understanding for requirements of a variety of different design briefs.

Concept Stage

Usually the design concept will come from the customer, they will plan it out as they would like the finished product to be and AVT will develop that concept into its final form, however they also offer in house concept design from their own design studios. The engineers can even work at your own choice of location providing they are under your guidance.

At this stage they will also give you guidance on they best use of materials for you to use and achieve the highest possible standard for your brief.

Development Stage

The CAD information or drawing achieved during the concept stage can now be turned into foam components. These foam representations of your design are then used for pre-production and reviews.

Manufacturing Stage

Here all the hard work pays off and what started out as a concept becomes reality, your product is manufactured using the latest plotting, digitising and cutting equipment.

The 3 stages above are the 3 main steps towards the manufacture of your bespoke interior design.

SCD, Automotive Social Networking

What Is SCD? (Systematic Concept Duplication)

Systematic Concept Duplication is a created science for target marketing, it consist of a series of strategic processes and procedures, that all have their individual identities and already established proven functions, yet operating in sync as one concept. SCD means having a corporate strategy for ensuring that your company realizes their full potential. It is an overall strategy that begins by placing all consumers at the center of everything your company does. SCD also involves employing practical techniques and strategies that will improve all of your business processes.

The end result is to make your existing Corporation-

  • More profitable
  • Be a more enjoyable place to work
  • Have happy contented customers that come back again and again….with their friends

Applying SCD….to your industry

Innovation and customer service is essential in this era of the expanding automotive and customer service industry. Automotive sales, technology and customer service must be consolidated. In good times or bad, your company, its employees, and affiliates must continue to refine their focus in this ever-changing customer friendly virtual environment. SCD for the automotive industry will help define clear goals and the plans to achieve them. The implementation of our Automotive Processes & Procedures will excite the market place with aggressive, bold, and always effective tools that have been tested, proven to be effective and are now ready to be put into place to make your company that much more successful. Automotive Business Development is defined as;

“Taking What You Have And Making It Better”

The Goal…….SCD 10 Steps To the End-Result

  1. Deliver Online Customers
  2. Handling All facets Of Advertising & Marketing
  3. Making Business Development Profitable
  4. Keeping & Growing Your Customer Base
  5. Turning Leads Into Prospects
  6. Controlling The Web-Driven Environment
  7. Strategic DMS Integration
  8. Automotive E-marketing
  9. Power Follow-Up Programs
  10. Virtual Prospecting

SCD involves the human element, the mindset of the people, and the ability to show them a better way. We have taken successful processes and procedures from various industries, integrated them with the ABC’s of the Automotive Business, always getting the same end-result. The entire concept is designed to be implemented into the everyday procedures of those key employees who play an active role in the current and continual success of your company.

The following departments are normally created to function as separate identities, SCD combines these departments to make a well-organized machine operating to achieve the same goal, the same End-Result.

  • Business Development Department
  • The Internet Center
  • The Call Center
  • The Tracking Center
  • The Customer Relations Center
  • Marketing & Advertising

The System……….

Simplicity quickly defines the system that will be created around your goals and expectations, your company’s end-result. The key principals of SCD as applied to your company will include a group of automotive, guest relations and sales elements forming a complex whole. Training, Technology and Merchandising begin the applied concept, there is no one rule or starting point for SCD, it is very conformable to almost any already applied process. Change is never the goal, because with change, you always get resistance, and that will cause a waste of valuable time. A detailed, yet quick assessment and interview of key employees, their departments, their functions and their goals are made. We take what you already have and make it better, by creating better people through their own already established processes and procedures.

SCD must become the key to the driving growth of your company. Only when every point of sales, service and customer contact is finely tuned, can you build loyalty, the key to growing your company. SCD’s Automotive Business Development transforms the culture of your dealerships into a smooth machine geared to capture, control and manage customers and grow your bottom line. Though we have the knowledge to generate, build and manage, our industry lacks the ability to manage processes and procedures, we start but truly never follow through.

The virtual world continues to grow in and around the automotiveindustry, Automotive Business Development (ABD) helps control the growth and capture those customers who are searching the web for service, finance, and/or sales and have chosen your dealerships. Today’s consumers spend more time researching information on the internet about their next purchase.

The Concept……….

Application is the key ingredient to the concept of SCD, once there has been a detailed introduction, overview and assessment, the concept is applied to the dealer’s already established routine through Key employees. The concept is defined as, evaluate, update, eliminate, and replace effective methods from other industries into the daily routine of your key employees, and allowing them to benefit from the results. There must be a quick and effective integration into your already established departments that include the internet, Business Development, and guest relations, turning your dealerships into an internet savvy environment, without changing the culture.

True success through Automotive Business Development involves, first the leader’s goals and expectations for their dealerships, their employees, and their individual departments. ABD allows for the leader to duplicate their efforts directly into their key employees, the environment, the mind-set and expectations of all guests. Our industry already knows what to do, but without application through the human element, everything that we have utilized in the past becomes worthless. SCD allows for value to be created within your environment, replacing the thinking, the verbiage, and attitudes of key employees, with innovative thinking. Always allowing your dealership the ability to adjust any situation to your advantage. Creating a recession proof business, that will profit in good times and bad, regardless of the season. The End-Result will become, A Residual Flow Of Quality Traffic.

SCD maintains a balance between the thinking of your employees and the expectations of your guest. Unfortunately, people have attitudes, but through SCD applied concepts, your people will take on a new attitude and method for handling almost any situation. They become constant thinkers, taught to utilize their Reticular Activating System, in turn creating in your dealerships a network of Ah Ha’s…that will establish the How To…as they go along.

The Reticular Activating System is the attention center in the brain. It is the key to “turning on your brain,” and seems to be the center of motivation.

A Concept of the Future (And the Past)

Pininfarina, an Italian car company founded by Battista “Pinin” Farina in 1930, has long been a symbol of creative extremes in the automotive industry. In its early years Pininfarina operated on a small scale, producing a handful of prototypes and very limited runs of production cars. Soon the company began to incorporate aerodynamics into its designs and the Pininfarina name quickly became famous in the automotive industry.

The company continued to expand long after Battista’s death in 1966. Pininfarina partnered with manufacturers such as Ferrari, Alfa Romeo, Fiat, Lancia and more to create mass production cars as well as some of the most stunning concepts ever built.

To commemorate Pininfarina’s 75th anniversary, the company has partnered with Maserati and Motorola to create the Pininfarina Birdcage 75th Concept, a high-tech design with inspired styling and twelve cylinders. The name “Birdcage” is in reference to the Maserati racing legends of the past which feature some of the same tube construction styling that can be found in the concept.

The Birdcage 75th is based on the same carbon fiber chassis as the Maserati supercar, the MC12, and shares its 6.0 liter V-12 engine that puts out more than 700 hp. The mid-mounted engine is mated to the car’s rear drive wheels by a 6-speed sequential manual gearbox. With a weight of approximately 3300 pounds, the Birdcage 75th should have no problem getting up some serious speed.

On a recent trip to the 2005 SEMA convention in Las Vegas, I had an opportunity to inspect the new Pininfarina concept first hand. What makes most concept cars special is its styling, and the Birdcage 75th has plenty to look at. The basic shape of the car is based upon the most effective aerodynamic shapes in racing. The entire car has a tear drop shape to it and the roofline is low and unobtrusive. The exterior surfaces are low and uncluttered to give it a streamlined look. The upper half of the Pininfarina’s cabin is transparent, offering as clear a view of the road as possible.

Up front, the nose has the familiar Maserati styling as seen on current models such as the Quattroporte. The front grille feeds cool air to the engine and the brakes and is flanked by stylish LED headlights. The rear of the Birdcage 75th boasts thin rectangular LED taillights that fit nicely with the overall design. The entire package sits on top of 20″ front wheels and 22″ rear wheels styled in the tradition of the Maserati trident (the company’s logo).

There are no doors on the new Pininfarina. To access the interior the entire front section of the car opens. Inside, the interior has been seamlessly mated to the carbon fiber construction of the body. A heads-up display is mounted on a triangular tube structure that is reminiscent of the historic Birdcage Tipo 63. The Birdcage 75th has a host of new technological gizmos (as is to be expected with any concept) including infrared cameras that allow you to enhance vision at night, a central computer that performs many tasks, and more. But what I found most impressive is something a little more subtle. There are now side mirrors on the Birdcage 75th, instead cameras relay images to screens inside the car. The screens are placed at the very outer edges of the dashboard so it is almost as if you are looking at mirrors, like a traditional automobile. The lack of side mirrors also adds to the aerodynamics and styling of the Pininfarina.

The Birdcage 75th hosts a number of Motorola designed communication features based on Motorola’s iDEN cell phones. Some of the features are a bit over my head and are probably not likely to be used by many people aside from hardcore techno-buffs. But then again, this Pininfarina is a concept, and concept cars don’t have to make sense.

Overall the Pininfarina Birdcage 75th Concept is an impressive beast that succeeds in blending technology and good old fashion racing heritage together in a seamless and stylish way. If this is the future of the modern sports car, I like it. We can only hope that one day it will make it to the mass production line.