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Brief Published: 18 May 2017

Collaborative 3D Modelling: Car Design Tool

At the London Motor Show, hosted between May 3-6, London-based design and innovation consultancy Seymourpowell launched its as-yet-nameless virtual reality (VR) tool for automotive design. The software enables collaborative 3D modelling, making this a game changer for car designers.

The tool allows designers to sketch three-dimensional, full-scale models in a virtual environment using a VR headset and handheld controllers. It gives them the ability to create complex curves and duplicate forms while constantly being aware of the car’s proportions.

In a video made by Seymourpowell, lead automotive designer Richard Seale describes the software – which was developed in house – as “the ultimate design tool, because it blurs the boundaries between styling, 3D CAD, clay modelling and engineering.”

Focusing on improved collaboration, the tool is a networked platform, enabling team members to work on a project remotely in real time. This means colleagues can dial in to the work in progress with either a headset to actively participate, or with a mobile or tablet to observe the virtual model as if it was in the room, aided by augmented reality. 

Being able to see a car before it’s manufactured could be useful for marketers and customers alike, and opens up opportunities for bespoke design requests.

See Work Reimagined in which we explore how VR tools and holographic technology will change the way we work and communicate in the future. For more on performance-enhancing tools and technology, see our A/W 18/19 Design Direction Amplify.