This evening in Shanghai, at a packed venue in Hongqiao, students and the cream of the global automotive design fraternity gathered to celebrate the work and creativity of China’s brightest design talent at the tenth CDAC competition.

Hosted by the charismatic Chris Bangle, recently arrived from Turin to compere this annual event, he told the audience, “To be here and among the finalists is a great way to start your career.” A point that was firmly proved later in the evening by Wu Jingwen, Design Director of Duling Tech. When she presented the award for Best ideation, she offered some context to her presence. “Eight years ago, I was standing here, but as one of the winners. I started my career here.”

 Winners in all the 11 categories, selected from 386 entries this year, were invited to the stage to collect their awards and prizes. What’s more, the Judges had a surprise up their sleeves. Once they had awarded all the category winners, Hyundai’s Simon Loasby explained that there was one entry which didn’t win in a category, but deserved an award, that of ‘Highly commended by the Judges.’

Quite the demonstration of the fact that the CDAC Judges are driven by the desire to reward talent, even inventing new categories to do so! That award was given to Luo Minghao of Tongji University for his design for CNH Industrial.

Full results:

Best Exterior Design Sponsored by: Icona | Presented by: Anton Garland, Design Manager

  • Deng Weiqi and Kong Na, Southwest Jiaotong University

Best Interior Design – Sponsored by: Yanfeng  | Presented by: Tim Shih, Global Vice President Design

  • Gao Qifeng and Li Xingchen, Wuhan University of Technology

Best Luxury Concept – Sponsored by: Pininfarina | Presented by: Luigi Pier Ferrari, Head of Design

  • Liu Dong, Beijing Institute of Technology

Best Eco Solution – Sponsored by: Dinamica | Presented by: Lorenzo Terraneo, CEO

  • Wei Shijia, Long Jiuzhen and Zhu Yuanhan, Jiangsu University

Best Mobility Solution – Sponsored by: DiDi | Presented by: Charles Feng, Design Director

  • Wei Jiaheng, Hunan University

Best User Interface – Sponsored by: ZAC Design | Presented by: Zac Wang, Founder

  • Zhang Yifan and Li Xiaofei, Hunan University

Innovative Use of Materials – Sponsored by: BASF | Presented by: Andy Postlethwaite, Senior Vice President, Performance Materials Asia Pacific & Chairman & Director on the Board of Directors

  • Feng Yifan, LuXun Academy of Fine Arts

Best Design in Harmony with Chinese SocietySponsored by: CH Auto | Presented by: Daniel Darancou, Vice President of Design

  • Sun Bolin and Gong Jinyun, Dalian University of Technology

Best Ideation – Sponsored by: Duling Tech | Presented by: Wu Jingwen, Design Director

  • Li Boqian and Wang Yichi, Nanchang Hangkong University

Best Innovation – Sponsored by: KWA | Presented by: Daeshik Kim, CEO

  • Tao Lu, Jiangnan University

Judges’ Highly Commended Award:

  • Luo Minghao, Tongji University

Most Successful School – Sponsored by: College for Creative Studies | Presented by: Hojoon Kang, Assistant Processor of Transportation Design

  • Hunan University

Student Designer of the Year – Sponsored by: Magna | Presented by: Larry Erickson, Global Industrial Design Director

  • Liu Dong, Beijing Institute of Technology

And the overall winner, the Student Designer of the Year, who has won a 15-week semester course at Detroit’s prestigious CCS was Liu Dong. His work on the Infiniti brief really stood out for the Judges, and Liu was delighted to have won, telling Car Design News, “I just can’t believe it, I am so honoured.”

Congratulations to all the finalists and winners, and thank you to all the Judges and sponsors who make this competition truly focused on the talent, year after year.