There's a lot of hype leading up to this year's LA Auto Show. Not only are we up to 12 confirmations on world debuts, but for the first time it's being recognized by the OICA (Organisation Internationale des Constructeurs d'Automobiles). In all the glitz and glamor just don't forget about LA's proximity to the design studios of nearly every major automaker as well as the renowned Pasadena Art Center.

For the third consecutive year, LAAS is hosting a design challenge based on environmental sustainability. Among the entries will be a vehicle with fully recyclable body coverings, another that is pedal-powered and one that even implements algae-filled panels. This year's nine entries and entrants are...
  • Acura FCX 2020 Le Mans -- Acura Design Center
  • Audi Dynamic Space Frame -- Volkswagen/Audi Design Center California
  • Honda Extreme -- Honda Research & Development
  • Hummer O2 -- General Motors Advanced Design, California
  • Kia Sandstorm -- Hyundai Kia America Design Center
  • Mercedes-Benz RECY (pictured) -- Mercedes-Benz Advanced Design of North America
  • Mini BioMoke -- BMW Group DesignworksUSA
  • Toyota RLV -- CALTY Design Research
  • Volkswagen Nanospyder -- Volkswagen/Audi Design Center California
The judges for this year's contest are include a relatively influential group of names from the design industry: Tom Matano of San Francisco's Academy of Art, Imre Molner of Detroit's College for Creative Studies (CCS), Stewart Reed from Pasadena Art Center and Bill Van Amburg of Calstart (a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing transportation technologies in the fields of clean air and improved energy efficiency). Judging will undoubtedly be difficult, but aren't we really all just excited to see the far-out foresight of each of the concepts?

[Source: LA Auto Show, hat tip to Jacob Gordon of Treehugger]

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