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Creating auto art within strict rules

August 5, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
People always think back to the "good old days" of classic car design in bygone decades. But today's car designers have more to consider than just flashy looks. There are an assortment of regulations that car designers have to abide by - everything from fuel efficiency to crash-worthiness.There are still distinctive cars on the roads today, like the the all-new 2011 Jaguar XJ, which has gotten accolades from around the world for its sleek design.

Ian Callum, who designed that car, said that all Jaguars must have a certain look to them."I think it's something instintive going on in my head or in the back of my head that says this car has certain elements that say Jaguar."

But behind that design is also a long list of regulations. And to make it more complicated, every region has different standards. So cars like the Jaguar must conform to European standards of safety which require cars to be less harmful in the event of a collision with a pedestrian.

Within these confines car designers still frequently create striking looks, but the pressure is building with new regulations developing every day.

Ian Callum said he feels sorry for the next generation of designers because they are sure to face even tougher challenges in the future.


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