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Wanderlust Automotive 2010



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Includes a deep look into the 2010 Detroit auto show, as well as observations across multiple categories.

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Wanderlust Automotive 2010

  1. 1. anderlust 2010 North American International Auto Show If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it. - Ferris Bueller
  2. 2. When We Wander... We love to wander, and we love direction. What matters to us is at the periphery and at the center. Wanderlust is our campaign to find inspiration in everything around us, no matter how small or subtle. We believe that if you look closely, every detail has its place, its potential. In the end, everything matters. Wanderlust aspires to be more than the collection of cool stuff you can typically find in your RSS feed each morning. Rather, we curate and organize our collection into the most meaningful set of ideas, objects, environments, and experiences. Unlike hefty powerpoint documents touting broad, often intangible, macro trends, we start small and work our way out. Through this process, we know from the start that the opportunities we identify will be actionable and useful to our work. Because our Wanderings are already manifesting themselves in tangible ways, we’re inspired to adapt and reapply them to new projects. 2
  3. 3. ...We Always Come Back We believe that small details can lead to big ideas. To find those details, Wanderlust begins it’s process by studying trends in the most forward-thinking industries. We love the inspiration they provide and the level of access they offer. We then extract the higher level meaning behind each of the trends we identify. Not all patterns grow into deeply rooted trends, and not all trends impact all businesses. However, we see all of our observations as opportunity and inspiration. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 3
  4. 4. We asked Kaleidoscope’s Karl Ludeman to tell us a little more about his experiences this year at the auto show in Detroit What inspired you to make this volume of Wanderlust? We like to go places and see things and think about why they are that way. Hopefully we’ll inspire ourselves and get others to think about things a little differently. Plus, it’s fun. How did the trends you identified change from this year to last? Covering the auto show is new ground for us this year. We initially approached it as separate entity from the furniture trends book. While there are some trends unique to auto, most interesting were the similarities that began to emerge. Some trends were very aesthetically similar, while some were born out of the same consumer trend but expressed themselves in very different ways. You’ll see the results in part two of both books. What do you hope people will take away from looking through this document? Looking for trends will only give you a snapshot of right now, the immediate present. But understanding the root causes behind a given trend can give you insight into what drives people to choose one experience over another. What are the root causes for the choices today’s consumers are making? Anxiety and self-determination, which actually are not mutually exclusive as they would seem, but each driven by the other. It’s a vicious, beautiful, and ultimately very productive cycle.
  5. 5. part one: wanderings We look to the work of designers globally for inspiration and understanding. From our observations at the North American International Auto Show, three key patterns emerge: CYBORG 6 (‘sahy-bawrg) A living being whose powers are enhanced by computer implants. RETROSEXUAL 16 (‘re-troh ‘sek-shoo-uhl) Embraces classic pop culture. Retrosexual is the love of the traditional life style of the 1940’s to the 1960’s STRONG, SILENT 22 (strawng, ‘sahy-luhnt) A man of action who is reserved. Someone who is assertive but not talkative. part two: applications
  6. 6. CYborG Cyborg (‘sahy-bawrg) n. orig. Science Fiction 1. A living being whose powers are enhanced by computer implants. 2. A social acceptance that electric = earth friendly. 6
  7. 7. Seeing Patterns Mathematic patterns inspired by nature. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 7
  8. 8. 8
  9. 9. Moody Lighting Traditional light features come alive with pattern. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 9
  10. 10. 10
  11. 11. Mercurial Lights Expressive, emotional lines carry over from sketches to final concepts. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 11
  12. 12. 12
  13. 13. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 13
  14. 14. Visible Alternative INFoMAP Does alternative fuel lead to alternative design? k ndoew nsgfoxisgree ut hybri v rsio o e ting mode n yeocien ffi ned w ls Asian Automakers ih esiugdated details atd twso fu s l d p r e e m n ca us ak e Ad break etrofiles the Ex va d nce p fin in p hininspired by new techn in d rede er t in g gthe car in g new in m theside and oud Basic 2010 2011 mol Alternative Fuel Cars t US Automakers japan korea olo d gy europe European Automakers *alternative fuel car list from hybridcarscom 14
  15. 15. Vents and Layers Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 15
  16. 16. Retrosexual (‘re-troh ‘sek-shoo-uhl) adj. orig. english slang 1. Embraces classic pop culture. 2. The love of the traditional life style of the 1940’s to the 1960’s. RETROSEXUAL 16
  17. 17. Vintage Details, High Tech Execution A slow but steady evolution of the classics. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 17
  18. 18. The car has become…an article of dress without which we feel uncertain, unclad, and incomplete. -Marshall McLuhan, Understanding Media, 1964 18
  19. 19. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 19
  20. 20. Heritage Industry PREDICTIoN Asia creates a legacy of its own. While the US and Germany call upon Japanese and Korean automakers have been taking a different approach. Toyota’s release of the hybrid Prius in 1997, while not strong histories in tough times, newer a full electric, marked a line in the sand on alternative fuel that American manufacturers had been dancing around for over a 100 Asian manufacturers are forced to look years. The first “successful” electric vehicle was built in the US in 1891. Let’s just say it wasn’t a linear process from here to the Volt. forward. Could hybrids and electrics Fast forward to 2010. The eco-friendly trend has blurred with be the Asian heritage vehicles of the complex geopolitical issues and a simple need to spend less future? on fuel. These socioeconomic factors combined with the tech cultural brand of the countries that bring us Samsung and Sony are creating a perfect storm of demand and credibility for Asian automakers to own the alternative fuel market. Could the It’s no coincidence that referential nods to a more confident time 2010’s be the golden (or should I say silicone?) age for Asian remain prevalent into what was supposed to be the age of the flying automakers? I’ll let you know in 2040, when I anticipate the car. American consumers are comforted in chaotic times by the re-release of the Prius. (I really hope that covered wheel comes muscle or status cars of their parents. back!) 20
  21. 21. Wheel Appeal Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 21
  22. 22. Strong,Silent Strong, Silent (strawg-’sahy-luhnt) orig. english phrase 1. A man of action who is reserved. 2 .Someone who is assertive but not talkative. 22
  23. 23. Luxury is in the Details Clean, uninterrupted surfaces accented with micro-patterns and texture. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 23
  24. 24. Subtle CMF Matte and satin finishes as high end. Barely-there pops of color. 24
  25. 25. May I Be Blunt? “Pedestrian Safe” chopped off profiles and chunkier proportions. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 25
  26. 26. 26
  27. 27. Design improvements could prevent 8% of all pedestrian Will pedestrian safety laws kill the beautiful car? fatalities and 21% of serious injuries. -Matthew Phenix for -UK Transport Research Laboratory Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 27
  28. 28. Where’s my Smart Car? oPINIoN Ctrl+V 2011 autos are pulling design cues People are moving back to the cities. Gas prices and allocation remain controversial. Consumers are back to basics. Hummer is from hybrids to stay current. Except dead. Your mom just bought a Prius. for that whole size thing... Seems like the perfect time for a flood of “only what I need” efficient cost and eco-friendly cars filling the showrooms. What we seem to be finding is a field of new cars that look and feel like hybrids, except for their size. Some called the SUV a fad, others called electric a flash in the pan. It looks like both will be with us for a while and now they’ve begun to collide. As the SUV tries to reinvent its reputation as a crossover, watch the copy/pasting unfold. 28
  29. 29. Glass That Back Up! Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 29
  30. 30. Now it’s time to put it all together. We’ve done the deep dive during part one, and now it’s time to step back and see how everything fits together, where patterns overlap, and how they might affect the world we live in and the work we do. Trends raise our awareness of the social and cultural changes that are constantly occurring around us. Use the predictions and observations in this section to discover new ways to address consumer needs and to design new products, services or experiences. At Kaleidoscope, we expect Wanderlust trends to inspire action. Built from tangible examples that can be easily reapplied, each connection made in this section is designed for easy access. Feel free to modify or evolve the ideas to best fit your needs. We’re constantly referencing our past work to see where patterns have held steady, transformed, or died off. The content in this section references past editions of Wanderlust, so if you’d like a copy, let us know. 30
  31. 31. part two: applications Our applications combine hours of observation and analysis over the past few years at multiple trade shows and events. Check out our past editions if you’d like to dive more deeply into the concepts. TRACkER 32 See how the Wanderlust observations have sustained, evolved, or faded over time. BLENDER 34 Where transportation and furniture worlds collide. FORECASTER 37 Predictions for how trends impact key industries. CALL TO ACTION 41 What are you waiting for? Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 31 31
  32. 32. 2009 2010 ICFF, Salone ICFF, Salone, NAIAS FLYTTER 1 FoLLoW THE LIGHT le MONDE ANCIEN 2 MASH AESTHETICS CYBORG BACK To BAUHAUS STRONG, SILENT 3 NATUUR 4 SUPPLY AND DESIGN 6 5 DIY 8 7 DIREkT CoNCRETE JUNGLE RETROSEXUAL See a trend here you’re not familiar with? Let us know and we’ll send you one of our previous editions. 32
  33. 33. Tracking Trends 1 Light continues to be a source of experimentation in design far beyond the lighting category. Affordable and effective lighting technologies enhance the animated, moving objects that make up Flytter. 2 Light technologies, in particular LEDs, have become more accessible and affordable. By applying light in unexpected features on cars, furniture, and other objects, designers bring their products to life in new ways. Some patterns sustain over long periods of time, some die off quickly, and others morph into 3 Trends in sustainability continue into the auto show, with an emphasis on the short term. Hybrid and eco-friendly production cars indicate the urgency with which manufacturers new ideas. Constantly refining our point of view, are trying to provide solutions. our observations are tracked over time. Along each path, markers indicate key influencers and 4 An evolution of 2009’s Supply & Design, Natuur adjusts the trend’s path slightly, incorporating realistic nature imagery and objects in a more serious tone. motivators for each trend. Tired of last year’s pure form of rationality, the Direkt style of modern design 5 incorporates subtle, idiosyncratic details to hold one’s attention, while not straying for classic Bauhaus roots. While not immediately obvious, there is a connection between Concrete Jungle 6 and Cyborg through the expressed importance of original, natural ingredients and components. While transparency remains important across products and brands, there has been 7 a shift away from knowing a product’s lifecycle towards using a more pure, unaltered product in the first place. Nature remains a popular form of inspiration, with each year bringing new 8 interpretations and variations on the theme. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 33
  34. 34. BLENDER Reverse Abstraction A Blend of Natuur & Cyborg once filled to the brim with abstract metaphors intended to evoke emotions It seems that the more our world advances technologically, the more it and strengthen strong bonds with users, the design world is moving away attempts to incorporate natural forms and signals. Last year, we identified from poetry and moving towards prose. Gone are the gestures of plants and the furniture trend Concrete Jungle, which introduces elements of nature other living things in favor of the real thing. Coat racks aren’t inspired by tree into our uncompromisingly modern world. This year’s trend emerges out branches; they literally look like them. Cars feature leafy fabrics, lamps, and of many of the same reactions. Some consumers cope with the pace of interfaces. Taxidermy, perhaps the ultimate expression of literalism, appears technology and urbanity by surrounding themselves with reminders that to be everywhere. simpler lifestyles still exist. others thrive on the pressures of modern life, using Reverse Abstraction as a humorous, ironic way to show self-awareness. 34
  35. 35. BLENDER Differentiation is in the Details A Blend of Direkt & Strong/Silent Aware of their role in encouraging rapid consumption, Design’s internal For the mass consumer, access to everything is enabling people to be struggle with this power has often resulted in products that are more simple, more discerning. Teens in oklahoma can now easily track denim trends in austere, long-lasting, and well-crafted. While this point of view remained happening osaka. overloaded with information, people learn how to filter uninteresting to many businesses, evolving consumer sophistication out pushy messaging and visual noise. Economic troubles force higher indicates a shift in priorities. Products with simple impressions and refined end shoppers to be more restrained as well, since their mass counterparts silhouettes in both automotive and furniture categories indicate a newfound disapprove of any outward expression of wealth or advantage. Regardless of interest in attracting consumers through curious simplicity. once they’ve class or status, everyone desires indulgences, so they head off in search of begun to interact with a product, consumers find these products filled with something more subtle. interesting details to delight them. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 35
  36. 36. BLENDER Mash to the Future A Blend of Le Monde Ancien & Retrosexual The postmodern design world constantly references its own history The current approach is like firing a shotgun loaded with design cues from for inspiration. In the past years, one key decade or design movement myriad eras and movements. We’ve seen mash culture in music and fashion triumphantly reemerges for a short time to rule over it’s tradeshow. However, for years, and now more mass-produced objects have adopted the trend. we’re now seeing an explosion of experimentation with historical design. Entire cultures are now built around the pieces and parts of past generations. Everything from Victorian to Vuvuzela is appearing in the furniture world, It’s important to remember that the vintage and retro themes are not while the automotive industry leans on redesigns of successful models from always about an escape for modernity, not about nostalgia. This trend is for four different decades. Strangely enough, all these designs coexist pretty innovators looking forward, as they use their unprecedented access to style nicely, feeling less and less like nostalgia. Building on the Mash Aesthetics to find new solutions to new problems. trend from 2009, our post-post-modern reality relies on the juxtaposition of once opposing elements for new sources of innovation. 36
  37. 37. FoRECAST Simpler Times Can you tell which products are vintage and which ones are new? (We can’t either.) Root trend: Retrosexual While the furniture and auto worlds look to the past for inspiration, new Designers can also look to the past for innovative ideas that will help opportunities emerge in everyday consumer products through many of products stand out at retail. old school ideas applied to modern times, often the same motivations. In a chaotic world, consumers respond to vintage resurrected through technological advancements, have the potential to form and retro themed packaging as it reminds them of a simpler (and higher something groundbreaking. quality) time in their life. Brands use their heritage to reconnect with jaded consumers and provide peace of mind. By reverting to a simple message, many products cut through marketing hype and get to the core of consumer needs. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 37
  38. 38. FoRECAST Bioelectronic Root trend: Natuur The more technology advances, the more people yearn to reconnect Glossy black plastic is becoming antiquated, soon to be replaced with forms, with the natural world. Bioelectronics is an emerging field, particularly in textures, and colors that remind the consumer that nature provides the best healthcare, but we see it’s application across all consumer electronics. Form color palette. Authenticity will be a key to success in this approach; a revival following function, these electronics tend to mimic their inspiration found of beige-colored plastics won’t make the cut. in nature. We see this explicitly in furniture and automobiles, and we expect to see this trend continue to creep into more aspects of our lives. The Image: kennymatic | Flickr natural symbols are not a rejection of technology, it is technology and nature existing in paradoxical harmony. 38
  39. 39. FoRECAST The Car You Build Yourself Root trend: DIY People have always enjoyed customizing their cars. Whether they apply has helped their service businesses, they may also be missing out on an a few crudely-placed stickers to the back windshield or replace every important return to do-it-yourself resourcefulness. mechanical component with chrome-plated aftermarket parts, it seems like everyone wants to make the products they own more personal. Imagine if anyone could assemble a car without instructions. While proposals like this require a lot of investment, the auto industry aches for change. While customization grows in categories like footwear and consumer What if automakers created a plug and play system that allowed consumers electronics, major automakers have yet to fully capitalize on this trend. to replace parts as easily as plugging a socket into the wall? Allowing Despite some efforts in this area, cars have become increasingly more consumers better and more intuitive access to their vehicles makes them complicated to repair or refine. Most automobiles cover up most of the more aware of the help they need to make their car perform at its very best. working parts under the hood, discouraging self-maintenance. While this Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 39
  40. 40. FoRECAST Direkt Health Root trend: Direkt Not surprisingly, many healthcare product providers must prioritize other The Direkt trend will help emerging healthcare businesses jump the aspects of their business before design. The resulting products have curve. on products, the clean, uninterrupted surfaces will emphasize the historically been difficult to use and intimidating for patients. Leveraging technology beneath while comforting patients through it’s modern appeal. design as a tool to improve recovery times and quality of care, the healthcare Especially with capital equipment, applying the Direkt aesthetic will help industry’s perspective on design is shifting. once technology optimizes products that need to retain a classic aesthetic for extended periods of time. certain processes and procedures, design becomes the key tool for In environments, the modern-but-idiosyncratic aesthetic reminds patients businesses to differentiate their offering. of their homes and aids recovery. Doctors will choose the tool that seems precise, durable, and free of excessive styling. 40
  41. 41. Trends should raise your awareness of the social and cultural changes happening around you. More importantly, they should inspire you to act. Use these trends to discover new ways to address consumer needs through new products, interactions, or experiences. If You Don’t Use It, You’ll Lose It Our call to action At Kaleidoscope, we like trends that inspire ideas, but we love trends that inspire action. With each new project, we assess the cultural landscape to identify trends and brands that are a good match. A trend may represent an opportunity to express your brand in a new way. However, sometimes it is more authentic for a brand to be part of an anti-trend. To fully understand each opportunity, we immerse ourselves in the trend. We gain empathy by designing and interacting with a space that represents our target. Most importantly, we don’t stop after we’ve achieved awareness. We generate tangible directions for how our insights will inform our current and future work. The final step is to inspire teams, seeking both excitement and investment in an idea. Through visionary concept work, designers envision trends through the lens of a specific product or brand. Concepts can be quick cardboard models, life-like prototypes, or outlandish pieces solely for inspiration. Regardless, this step of creation is absolutely essential in making your ideas succeed. Good luck and have fun! Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 41
  42. 42. Thank You We hope you enjoyed this book and found our observations valuable. If you have questions about Wanderlust, please contact us. We look forward to collaborating with you to bring these trends to life. Katie Buchmann 800.930.5793 This presentation is a collection of past and present work by designers around the world and does not intend to solely represent work by Kaleidoscope. Wanderlust: 2010 Auto Show 43
  43. 43. The refusal to rest content, the willingness to risk excess on behalf of one’s obsessions, is what distinguishes artists from entertainers, and what makes some artist adventurers on behalf of us all. - John Updike anderlust