CDN Interior Motives Student Design Awards launched
by Euan Sey    27 Feb 2012
Designers, journalists and students socializing at last year's awards. Click for larger images
Best Production Interior was awarded to the 'Diet Mini' concept by Kosin Voravattayagon of Sweden's Umea Institute of Design
The 'X-AVR' concept by Michael Canty of the Academy of Art University was awarded the Volkswagen-sponsored Best Use of Technology Award
The awards show was attended by designers from all walks of life
Felix Godard was awarded the 2011 Student Design of the Year accolade as well as Best Artistic Visualization for his 'Metis Age' concept
Julliana Cho, another recent RCA graduate, won the Best Conceptual Exterior accolade for her 'Memory Piece' concept

Registration for the 10th Car Design News Interior Motives Student Design Awards has now opened. This is your chance to take part in one of the most important events in the design calendar, and to display your talent and fresh thinking to the world's top vehicle designers and automotive press.

'Metis Age' by Feix Godard secured the Student Design of the Year award at last year's Interior Motive Design Awards
'Fractal' by Liviu Tudoran, winner of the Best Innovative Interior award presented by Peugeot
Da Vinci' by Marcello Basilio of the Istituto Europeo di Design won the Best Eco Interior award sponsored by Dinamica
The 'Group Dynamic' concept created by recent RCA graduate Adam Phillips took home last year's Best Ergonomics award
Best Conceptual Interior was awarded to another recent RCA graduate, Ian Kettle, for his 'Neuron' concept

The theme of this year's competition is ‘What Comes Next? - Make Your Mark on the Car of Tomorrow' and has been devised in collaboration with Volkswagen, Ford and Peugeot. To help inspire you in your design process, Interior Motives has worked with these car-makers to create four  thought-provoking briefs:

The Next Icon - Iconic vehicles like the Model T, 2CV, Ford Mustang, VW Beetle and Porsche 911 were conceived by designers who possessed genuine social insight - who were able to imagine a vehicle with cultural relevance and enduring physical charm. Consider how recent breakthroughs in active safety are bringing us closer to the '100% safe car' , which will free designers from the passive safety legislation that defines the look and packaging of today's cars. With this in mind, create a truly 21st century vehicle with the potential to achieve the elusive status of 'icon'.

A Day in the Life - People in different countries lead different kinds of lives. And they need different things from their cars. Choose a country and examine the specific lifestyles, needs and behaviours that make the inhabitants different to any other in the world, and use them to create a kind of ‘personal transportation manifesto' specific to that group. Then use this manifesto to design a bespoke vehicle interior that truly satisfies the needs and desires of that country.

Mechanical Fascination - Electric cars cost more than those that are conventionally-powered, yet almost all of them - the VW Golf E, for example - look the same as a normal car, inside and out. As a result they're bought mainly from a sense of social responsibility. Give potential customers a new reason to pay the price premium by creating a brand-new interior aesthetic that truly celebrates the electric powertrain. Design an interior that showcases the beauty of electrical power - that presents the storage, generation and flow of electricity as a physical mechanism, one every bit as exciting as the transmission of power from a traditional V8 or V12.

Head of State - Pick a head of state - a president, a king, a prime minister, a religious figurehead - and design a vehicle that communicates their unique attributes to the world about them. Design the vehicle around this leader's political ethos as well as their logistical needs. What kind of functions must it have? What kind of terrain must it cross? What must this vehicle say about the person inside it and the country or group they lead?

Prizes will be awarded in the following categories: Best Eco interior; Best Use of Technology; Best Innovative Interior; Best Ergonomics; Best Conceptual interior; Best Production Interior; Best Conceptual Exterior; and Best Artistic Visualization. Each winner receives the accolade of their peers, the design community, an award, the attendant publicity and $500.

From the category winners one design is selected as the overall 2012 Student Design of the Year - with prize money of $5000.

All the winners are announced at a glamorous ceremony to be held in Paris on 26th September, the eve of the first Paris Motor Show press day. The work of all the finalists will be on display, and shortlisted and finalist students will have the opportunity to mingle for the evening and the party with some of the the world's most influential vehicle designers.

The judging panel comprises some of the biggest names in vehicle design, including Volkswagen's Romulus Rost and Wolfgang Müller-Pietralla, global head of Ford interiors Scott Strong, Amko Leenarts of PSA Peugeot Citroën, and Jürgen Uedelhoven of Uedelhoven Studios.

Full details of the competition and the briefs, including a downloadable student manual, can be found at The competition is open to anyone enrolled at any accredited undergraduate or graduate design degree programme, in either automotive and non-automotive fields. Those studying fashion design, industrial design, architecture and other areas are eligible and very welcome. Entries must have been designed during the current 2011/2012 academic year, and be submitted by midnight GMT on 11 May 2012.

We wish everyone the very best of luck, and look forward to seeing some of you in Paris.

Related Articles:
Interior Motives Design Awards 2011
Interior Motives Design Awards 2010
Interior Motives Design Awards 2009