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Some time ago, BMW introduced a visionary concept car called the GINA. GINA was a shape shifting sports car that featured an exterior of fabric “skin” as opposed to hard panels and paint. Beginning construction in 2001, Chris Bangle, head of design at BMW, brought together a new perspective of art, technology, and functionality. The BMW GINA would adapt it’s form based on the behaviors it was used for, for instance, the head lights would only be shown when in use.
GINA, which stands for “Geometry and functions In ‘N’ Adaptations,” used a fabric made of polyurethane-coated spandex, which was both extremely durable, and water resistant. The aluminum wire structure underneath kept the vehicles rigidity, while adapting to factors like speed and weather. Where hydraulic actuators made car transform shapes, a flexible carbon was used. As a minimalistic touch, Bangle’s outlook was simple: you don’t need to see what is not in use. For instance, the interior panels would remain dormant and minimal when not in use, and conform to the driver once inside.
Unfortunately the GINA never went past it’s concept form, which in all likeliness contributes to the strict factors of legalization, but why? Why does innovation have to stop here? Is this the last we will see of pure creativity, simply because of production reasons? It’ s this writer’s thought that companies should continue to break barriers of artistic science, and novelty, while incorporating new standards of a greener vehicle.
Check out BMW’s Visionary Outlook below, and let us know what you think about the direction of automobile design, and what you would love to see in the future.
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