GM engineers dressed in drag while designing new SUVs

During the development of General Motors' new GMT900 SUVs, the team in charge of design was taken out to the company's Milford Proving Grounds and made to dress in drag as an exercise. They wore high-heels, fake press-on nails and garbage bag skirts to simulate what The Car Connection refers to as "female handicaps" (are we really calling them that?) while operating various features of their new 'utes. The result was at least three features on GM's new SUVs that wouldn't have been there otherwise: retractable running boards for easier entry/exit in a skirt, a larger center console that can hold a purse and an easier to operate rear lift gate.
The idea for this excursion into androgyny came from Mary Sipes, a vehicle line director at GM and a woman with a mission to make her company's vehicles more user friendly for females. Since women comprise more than 50-percent of the buying public, she realized it would only help the company's bottom line to consider them more when designing new vehicles. Since the design teams are still very male dominated, Sipes decided to dress her teams in drag to force them to consider their vehicles from a female perspective. Hmmm... perhaps a better solution than playing dress up would be to just hire more women. Regardless, the intent was commendable, but we're wondering if our female readers can think of any other missing features that might make their lives a little easier.

[Source: The Car Connection]

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