Car design involves a number of variables that affect its shape. Curvature in a plan view is most commonly caused by aerodynamics and styling issues. The shoulder is a prominent feature in front of a vehicle, whereas it is less evident in the back. Typically, the shoulder runs horizontally along the length of the car, with a slight rise and fall (as in the BMW Z4). While the shoulder is the most noticeable feature from the front, it is also present on the side.
The design of a car can be influenced by many factors, including national culture. As a result, car design in one country may not be appropriate for another. However, in general, cars are more similar than they are different. For instance, the Fiat 500 was a popular vehicle in Europe, but did not sell very well in the U.S. because it was not suited for American roads. Its high ride height and lack of passenger room meant that it looked silly on the interstate.
German automobile designers also played an important role in the development of modern automobile design. Giorgetto Giugiaro and Bruno Sacco were notable among them. Likewise, Volkswagen leaned heavily on the work of Giorgetto Giugiaro and Marcello Gandini, while Flaminio Bertoni was responsible for the design of its DS. Similarly, Peugeot and Renault had a significant influence on car design in the post-World War II era.
Getting experience in the field of car design is important if you want to succeed in the industry. An impressive portfolio of work and an extensive knowledge of automotive trends are necessary to ensure success. Furthermore, you should have the talent and desire to play the industry’s game. The automotive design industry is a competitive field, and you should have the skills and desire to make it big.
The car design process begins with tape drawings. Just a few lines and shapes on a sketch can make a car instantly identifiable. From there, state-of-the-art digital technologies are used to create a 3-D model. For example, computer-aided styling (CAS) designers use Virtual Reality to create a virtual three-dimensional model from a sketch.
Changing needs and conditions are two other factors that influence car design. Changes in our lifestyle and the environment have prompted designers to create cars that are efficient and environmentally friendly. The emergence of electric and hydrogen cars and fuel cell cars are proof that car designers are changing the car design. By using renewable energy sources, modern cars are more reliable, long-lasting, and environmentally friendly than ever before.
To work in car design, you should have excellent sketching skills and knowledge of cars. You should also be good at describing products and using automotive studio jargon. You can start by building a portfolio with sketches from famous car brands. The portfolio can be an A2 or A3 format panoramic booklet, or a CD of digital sketches that show different ideas.