We all hope that the new year will be better than the previous one, that “the beautiful far away will not be cruel to us”. But sometimes, judging by concept cars, the day ahead should be treated with caution – it may not turn out to be as beautiful as we’d like it to be. The following 10 concept cars were created by top-tier car brands, but that doesn’t stop them from being strikingly ugly. If that’s the future, we’ll pass. We suggest you take a look at these design experiments and rejoice that the production models look nothing like them.
The Lancia Nea was shown 19 years ago at the Bologna show and it was one of the first signals of serious changes in Lancia’s camp. In time, the company lost its motorsport enthusiasm, said goodbye to simple geometric shapes, and the lineup became a line of avant-garde, but too friendly hatchbacks and minivans, diluted with “Chryslers” with Lancia nameplates and executive sedan Thesis. You could say that this was the point after which Lancia went from a period of stagnation to a steep peak.
The official press release states that Nea is the quintessence of the Lancia brand as the concept “embodies the firm’s core values: passenger comfort on board, satisfying personal space needs, maximum relaxed driving experience”. Already at this point, you can roll your eyes. As a concept of the early 2000s, there is a full range of communication and other electronics in the cabin (mini-PC, fax, telephone, DVD player), but all this does not make the Nea the Lancia that was expected.
At one time The Wall Street Journal conducted a poll, which purpose was to find out which concept cars should be put into serial production, and which should be hidden from sight, far away. 2,497 people took part in the poll. Well, 69 % of the interrogated recognized Infiniti Kuraza as a real nightmare, which has no place in this world – the crossover headed the list of the most ugly concept cars at the beginning of 2006. And that says a lot.
The Kuraza concept was first shown at the Detroit auto show in 2005. The idea was to create a hub car in which six passengers could comfortably travel – all have equal conditions and plenty of personal space. To do this, however, one had to almost completely sacrifice the trunk, and put seats on the principle of an amphitheater, with a slight increase in height to the back row. Full equality, in general. Alas, because of this concept, suffered design, so much so that it was not saved by the impetuous lines in the style of other Infiniti models, nor 23-inch wheels.
Cadillac Urban Luxury Concept
A hybrid Cadillac with a three-cylinder liter engine is half the battle. Why does this concept look like a Smart with Cadillac tinsel? There can be only one explanation – British designer Nicky Smart realized in 2010 that he got the surname for a reason. Although he had never had such “eclipses” before, it was Smart who drew the radical Ariel Atom sports car.
The Urban Luxury Concept was supposed to test whether Cadillac’s clients are ready for a compact city car. But they only scratched their heads in bewilderment. As expected of a city-car, ULC is extremely economical (the declared average fuel consumption is 4 liters per 100 kilometers), but functional: up to four people can get on board. The obvious conceptual features are the upward-facing doors and projection screens in the cabin.
We shall refrain from comments on appearance of Z22 – everything is clear here. It is interesting that this car predicted the most improbable future of BMW and very precisely: carbon fiber is used in structure of its body (hello to the present CLAR platform); in-line four-cylinder engine is located transversely (as in front-wheel drive 2s or younger X’s). Z22 was created under the slogan “Automobile technology after 2005” – as if they were staring into the water, damn it.
All controls of the concept were electromechanical – control was carried out with the help of drive-by-wire system. Thus, there was also a whole heap of auxiliary electronics: DSC, ASC, CBC, ABS… Bavarians have installed a prototype of multimedia system iDrive in the interior which then was called MMI. Yes, just like in Audi – with the difference that the acronym stands for Man Machine Interface, and not Multi Media Interface in “four rings”.