Designers converge in Los Angeles to plan the cars of the future.
The Design Los Angeles Competition, hosted by the L.A. Auto Show, is a chance for design teams to cut loose and dream. There isn't anything real about a car that uses nanotechnology to disassemble and reassemble itself over and over again-but it is imaginative. Nine manufacturers-Acura, Audi, GM, Honda, Kia, Mercedes-Benz, Mini, Toyota, and Volkswagen-got involved this year with the challenge being "environmental sustainability." That means creating a futuristic design that takes "tread lightly" to a whole new level; some of these cars actually give back to the planet.
My two personal favorites are from Mercedes-Benz and Mini. While some of the other designs are completely impossible, those two designs resemble real cars. The front end of the Mini Biomoke could easily see production as a speedster model in the next few years, and it would look totally awesome. Its biodegradable wood body isn't feasible in today's world, but a steel bodied Moke would work. Mini, these drawings look awesome. Build us this racer.
The Mercedes-Benz RECY does the best job of blending heritage and future elements. The grille and headlights are pure 300SL made modern. The wood body looks like a classic Chris-Craft boat. Wooden wheels seem a bit unreliable for a futuristic sports car, but we don't need talk details here. The Bluetec biodiesel is completely feasible.