At a panel discussion Sunday evening at WantedDesign, an international design exhibition held in Manhattan that occurred alongside the International Contemporary Furniture Fair, Benoit Jacob opined that, "after over a century of car design, it may be time for a bit of a rebirth." Jacob is the head designer for BMW i, the eco division of the well-known German automaker. He wasn't just talking about the visual design of vehicles, but something deeper. Times have changed, he said, and so should our modes of transportation so they better address the growing traffic issues in megacities as well as the pressing need to preserve our environment. BMW i's answer to this is creating environmentally conscious vehicles as well as getting involved in a car sharing program (DriveNow).

During the talk, Jacob presented the audience with teaser images of the all electric BMW i3 that is due out in a couple of years. He also made mention of some of the unusual research and development (recall the fabric covered GINA) BMW is involved in such as car bodies built via origami-like folding of sheet metal and the use of recycled wood. We look forward to seeing how much of this new technology makes it into production, even if we're not holding our breath.

[Source: The New York Times]


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