José Diaz de la Vega, the Volvo Car Corporation’s Director of Strategic Design, supplied Wim Oude Weernink with the key to the design history of the VCC, the concept car presented by the Swedish firm at the Geneva Show.
” With this concept”, explains de la Vega, “we wanted to introduce more emotional impact into Volvo design. While retaining the forward cabin, we pushed its highest point very slightly backwards. That configuration, combined with the rising waistline gives the VCC its dynamic look”. It also makes the car look a bit longer.
” In side view, the VCC combines the boxy shapes of the classic Volvo 240 and its own futuristic lines. That might look daring in cross-section, but in actual fact, it’s much sleeker”. The VCC also introduces any number of innovative details: the streamlined glazing; the slender A pillars; the built-in bumpers with their crumple-zone ends; the lighting system that abandons the traditional Volvo style of horizontal front lighting clusters lined up with the radiator grille.
The original look of the VCC interior is a combination of roominess and practicality that reflects a typically Scandinavian interpretation of luxury and comfort.
The actual design process was an intriguing mix of physical modelling and virtual reality. An initial three weeks of digital work on the surfaces was followed by a further three weeks spent developing the clay model. Once that was approved, the team spent three more weeks finalising the surfaces on-screen. “In fact, it took us just nine weeks to complete the design of the VCC’s exterior”, points out José Diaz de la Vega.
The article continues in Auto & Design no. 140