Technology is driving our new relationship with cars.
Cars today do more than take you to the grocery store. Get on the road and you see families having fun and enjoying quality time on a long drive home. Commuters use cars as conference rooms or a quiet place to decompress (when there’s no traffic). For Gen Y drivers, the car is a personal refuge – or perhaps a phone booth or music venue. The 21st-century car is evolving and becoming an integral part of our lives. How are we, as designers, dealing with this transformation?
On the interactive highway
People bring their own technologies to enrich the in-car experience. It’s been a while since iPods replaced car radios; now smartphones are replacing Garmins. This raises important questions about how we can introduce innovative technologies to such a compact and controlled environment. The dashboard, for example, can be simplified so it doesn’t resemble an airplane cockpit. New generation hybrids, electric vehicles and sustainable technologies are challenging accepted notions about the car.
Steering drivers in the right direction
The right combination of design and technology can help car manufacturers create new experiences that appeal to a more diverse range of drivers. With our expertise in biomechanics, product design and interaction design, Smart is uniquely positioned to bring together the physical and digital elements that result in environments drivers will fall in love with every time they get behind the wheel.