Sunday, December 25, 2011
Saturday, December 24, 2011
Front Page! My commissioned rendering of Acura's upcoming NSX sportscar was featured on the front page of Detroit's Automotive News last week. Due to be shown at the Detroit International Auto Show in a couple of weeks, I worked with an editor at the newspaper to render this V6, hybrid, mid-engined sportscar from his recollection of a press briefing. It was a great experience. I first wrote about it all, here. I'm especially amused by the rainbow-colored advertisement below my illustration!
Closeup of the illustration and my bold faced photo credit!
Sunday, December 18, 2011
2013 Impala—The next large Chevy sedan will be based on the same architecture as the new Cadillac XTS. I've created a Chevy version of that car, and I'm guessing it's pretty close to the real deal. I've used classic Impala logos and wheels, as well as very 1961-like Chevy lettering on the hood. Compared with the XTS, I've simplified the bodysides and given it a late-model Impala greenhouse, as well as smoothing out the trunk shape.
Update: This chop is now more than a year old. The new Impala is out and I'm happy to say it looks much better than this! I was surprised to see the "twin grille" finally tossed, but happy about it.
Friday, December 16, 2011
2013 Jeepster heavy duty off roading SUV—OK, this one will probably be controversial as it hits the web, lol. Now that Fiat owns Chrysler, which owns Jeep, rumors have been swirling for months about Fiat-based Jeeps. I've seen countless renderings of the little Fiat Panda with bigger tires and a slapped on Jeep grille touting the new cars.
I've taken a slightly different tack with mine. I've kept the historic and rugged chassis of the current Jeep Wrangler. Seriously, it's just about the best off roader for consumers built today, so why not use it? I added a modified/stretched Fiat Panda body on top of the Wrangler chassis, utilizing the best part of that Fiat architecture—the modern cabin with all the built-in safety structures and features expected today. I've used many Jeep components—door handles, body clips, thick rubberized cladding, swing out spare tire, etc, to give this newly enclosed little SUV all the tried-and-true ruggedness expected of a vehicle with the name Jeep on it. Entrance/Departure angles remain the same as the Wrangler.
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Audi A4 Allroad Black Forest Walnut edition—Finishing a retro-inspired woody triumvirate with my recent Jeep Wrangler Woodsman and Buick Apollo Estate chops, I've micro-veneered the sides and tailgate of this all-wheel drive German luxury compact wagon with genuine walnut from the Black Forest of southern Germany. I've also gracefully changed the greenhouse and lowered the bodysides a bit for a more sporting profile. High fashion, high quality, sporting luxury woody wagon... what more could the well-to-do successful graphic artist ask for, lol?
The background of this image includes a vignette of sailboats in a harbor photographed by none other than Woody, of Woody's Car Site, a very loyal reader!
- Audi's interesting history via Wiki
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Jeep Wrangler Woodsman—A new trim series for the venerated Jeep Wrangler, here in recent 4-door form, the Woodsman edition features 3-D American Walnut microveneer side panels. Door hinges are polished aluminum as is the full-sized roof-mounted luggage rack and bright mesh grille-slat inserts. Interior would feature heavy duty leather seating with wood accents on the instrument panel and removable doors. Snap-in Sisal carpeted mats are removable for cleaning. Body color fenders and rear roof section coupled with the full-length wooden paneling combine for a look reminiscent of the now-classic 1984-era Cherokee SUV.
- Image updated from original post. I had left a badge saying "Call of Duty" on the Jeep's side and was told at the Motor Trend forum that it was a video game. I thought Call of Duty was a Jeep trim level, lol. I deleted the badge for this photo, and was happy to do so, It really cleaned up that front panel! (I've never played a video game in my life, so I really have no idea about these things!)
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Buick Apollo MPV—Since the new Buick Regal and the even newer Buick Verano are based on GM's European Opel division, I looked through their porfolio to see what else might be in the pipeline. Opel markets a very cool "mini people mover" or MPV, called the Zafira. It's a versatile, compact tall wagon, with family features so many Europeans have become enamored with since the first Renault Scenic hit the streets fifteen years ago. I created a Buick version of the Zafira, and reached back into the Buick archives for the Apollo nameplate. The first Buick Apollo, 1973-75, was a hurriedly put together compact based on the Nova platform, and gave Buick a small car to sell after that first gas crisis in 1973. Besides the Buick grille and cues, I gave the D pillar a bit more width for a more cohesive, and American, appearance.
It wouldn't be an "artandcolour" wagon if it didn't come with a Woody package! Optional on my Apollo MPV would be this Estate Wagon option, with walnut microveneers adhered to the four doors and layered under the paint's clearcoats for a maintenance free gloss finish.
Sunday, December 4, 2011
For this 2013 Taurus SHO coupe, I gave it the slim, flowing C pillars that Ford's 1960s cars were famous for. First shown on the '63 1/2 Galaxie "slantback" coupe, my mother's bright red 1966 Fairlane 500/XL had a gorgeous roofline, too. While not really needing to modify the roof itself from the production Taurus sedan, I thinned out the C pillar and gave the greenhouse more glass area. Extending the body contour line just below the door handles, all the way to the taillights instead of breaking it for the rear wheelwell, also gives the Taurus a more flowing appearance. Conventional wisdom is that a Taurus coupe would cannibalize sales from the Mustang, but I really don't see why. The Mustang is a performance rear-wheel drive coupe, even in V6 form these days, and the Taurus is a luxury car with front- or all-wheel drive. I really think the two could co-exist in a Ford showroom.
Friday, December 2, 2011
eTTron Coupe—Based on their recent eTron Roadster, this is my idea of what a third generation TT coupe should look like. The first TT from the late 1990s, was an iconic design, still a "looker" today. The second generation was a very cautious evolution of the first design, not bad, just not as strong a design as the first. For a third generation, I propose not only a groundbreaking new platform, Audi's eTron drivetrain, but an entirely new body architecture. I think this car could be just as iconic for the early 21st century, as the original was for the late 20th century.
Thursday, December 1, 2011
Corolla SR7, Toyota returns to the rear-wheel-drive small car arena. Or what used to be the rear-wheel-drive small car arena; only the BMW 1-series currently uses that design in a compact car these days. This time around, with a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission, the model name is SR7, but evokes the classic SR5s of the late '70s. From a massaged front end with a longer hood and longer steering wheel-to-front wheel length, to house a longitudinal inline engine, to a reproportioned rear bumper, this Corolla nicely evokes its roots at the same time it's clearly at home in the 21st century.
Saturday, November 26, 2011
The Return of the 60 Special—My version of a long-wheelbase XTS brings back Cadillac's historical 60 Special nameplate, first used on a young William Mitchell's classic 1938 sedan.
I added about three-inches behind the XTS's front doors for more rear legroom, and I extended the hood and front wheels forward about four-inches for a total wheelbase of about 118 inches. The longer hood gives the car nicer proportions and also gives more room for the battery storage. This 60 Special is Cadillac's plug-in hybrid, with the "60" signifying a range of up to 60 miles on pure electric power, almost doubling the Chevy Volt's advertised 35 miles. The power outlet is behind the "60" on the lower rocker panel. This would be an electrically opening hatch and would be part of a wireless charging system. When charging the car, you'd push the button to open the access hatch, revealing the receiving antenna. It would then activate the wireless charging unit in your home garage, powering the access hatch closed when the batteries are at full power.
Further changes from the donor XTS photo include enlarging the glass area in the "third" window behind the rear doors to emphasize the more spacious passenger compartment. Aero wheels from the Cadillac Converg hybrid concept were added, extended chrome and black rocker panel trim visually lengthen the car and revised taillights look more classically Cadillac. Oh yeah—I gave this car fender skirts, too! Let's call 'em aero spats this time around.
I parked this new green machine in Brooklyn, with a great view of Manhattan's daytime skyline.
Original photo, here.
U P D A T E : I moved the 60 Special nameplate higher up on the body sides, making the charging outlet door easier to reach in the event wireless charging isn't available... I also added rear wreathe-and-crest sidelights and full-color Cadillac logos on the wheels.
U P D A T E 2 : I just changed the cutlines for the rear door. I made them more "formal" and more Bill Mitchell. They also simplified the bodysides—always a good thing. I also raised the rear side light to better line up with the 60 Special nameplate in front.
Friday, November 18, 2011
Based on the LaCrosse GL just shown at the LA Auto Show, my Centurion coupe would be a top-shelf offering. Besides removing the two rear doors to make a coupe, I moved the front wheels four-inches forward and lowered the bodysides and roof by three-inches. I enlarged the glass area, as well as the grille. I also added sleeker headlights from the equally-new Hyundai Azera. One small detail I usually add to my Buick chops: A return of the red, white, and blue Buick logos, in place of the current all-chrome version. I like the classic look of the TriColor! A smoothing of the body contours finishes out the changes to the timeless appeal of this large Buick coupe. Original photo here.
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
I posted these two Hyundai Sonata coupes when I did them, on my main blog, but I'm filling out the category here. Above, the Sonata Turbo pillarless coupe in white with a full-length black glass roof. I think the Sonata really makes a beautiful 2-door!
The subtly aerodynamically restyled Sonata Hybrid also makes a good looking pillarless coupe! I saw a Sonata Hybrid 4-door in town yesterday, and it's really quite smart. The LED taillights are up-to-the-minute in contemporary good looks, and the slightly sharper and edgier bumpers and bodysides stand out more in person than they do in photographs.
Sunday, November 13, 2011
Although I haven't had a lot of time to create new chops, I have a back-catalog of more than 600 cars I've created since 2005. Here are just a few of them.
Porsche's smaller-than-Panamera 4-door would be powered by a turbocharged 4-cylinder front-mounted engine. Weight would be kept under 2700 lbs through the use of carbon fiber and aluminum.
Chrysler's now-classic Engel Imperial, 1964-'66, reimagined as a 2-door limousine Crown Coupe. Besides the roofline and rear window, I modified the rear bumper and bodysides to enhance the coachbuilt appearance. I placed the car in front of a Frank Lloyd Wright-designed home. Classics deserve Classics!
"The Sky Belongs to You." My '66 Thunderbird Sky Coupe photoedited an advertisement of that year's Town Landau which ran in the National Geographic. I added fixed glass panels in the roof, on either side of the real roof console featured in that year's Town coupes. I also greatly enlarged the rear side windows to add a more light to the interior.
"Unique in the All the World" was a Thunderbird tagline for years. In this instance, I modifed a press photo of the brand-new for '67 Thunderbird four door Landau. The model was wearing what appears to be a Pucci dress, so I went with that mid-Sixties style, adding translucent Pucci fabric to the layout from one of my mother's scarves. I made the Tbird into an early 5-door Grand Touring vehicle, not quite a wagon, not quite a sedan. I surmised that perhaps Pucci reversible seat cushions could accompany this special edition. Working to make images appear "vintage" and somewhat worn, is an effect I especially like to create in Photoshop. By "practicing" on my car chops like this, I've been able to use these techniques in some of the books I've designed.
Although the Hyundai Genesis coupe is just about to be introduced in facelifted form, with a much more attractive and aggressive front end design, I created this "4-door sports car" version a few years ago. 4DSC was the advertising "gimmick" for Nissan's Maxima, and I appropriated it for this Hyundai which would compete with the Maxima. With this sloping roofline, this sedan would not be the most spacious, but today's 4-door coupes are all about style and not practicality. I kept the unique beltline "dip" and "hid" the rear door handle to preserve a bit more "coupiness."
This little Buick Special "Estate Wagon" was chopped so long ago, I can't remember the base photo. I'm guessing it might have been one of the Opels that Buick was about to introduce in the States, but it might have been an Audi A3. Or a Saturn, lol. I remember adding Buick's classic "sweepspear" downward sloping character line and then emphasizing it with a 1969-type Buick Sportswagon woodgrain treatment above it. The "wood" is bordered on the top with a brushed aluminum molding but is left borderless on the bottom, instead relying on the character line for its stopping point.
A quick chop when the new Taurus was introduced, to add a bit of visual "drama" to the SHO version, with a two-tone paint job. I recontoured the rear bumper, adding the "cut-in" at the top near the taillights to visually diminish the size of the plastic bumper covering. I also added that wraparound chrome molding to emphasize the new bumper contour and to add some width to the very tall rear aspect of the Taurus.
Besides making a 4-door out of the Genesis coupe, I also chopped this 2-door Luxury Coupe from the Genesis 4-door. I've always wondered why the Genesis 4-door was so much larger and more luxurious than the coupe. They almost seem like they're not related at all, except for the fact they're both rear-wheel drive cars. For this Luxury Coupe, I targeted the Mercedes CLK in appearance and marketing.
Saturday, October 29, 2011
Based on the MKR concept car from five years ago, this 2013 Continental would be Lincoln's re-entry into the rear wheel drive luxury sedan market. The size of a short-wheelbase Mercedes S Class, but priced more like the E Class, this suicide-door sedan would also feature optional all wheel drive. Available with an EcoBoost V6, Supercharged V8 or Hybrid drivetrains, this car would go a long way in doing battle with the resurgent Cadillac division of the New General Motors.
For this chop, compared with the original 2006 concept, I raised the roof, added quarter windows front and rear, lengthened the trunk and rear overhang, removed a character line and added black and chrome rocker panel trim among other subtle "production" differences. The wheels are more appropriate in design for a luxury vehicle, too, but would still be state-of-the-art 21 inchers.
Friday, October 28, 2011
Not one of my full-blown chops, just a slight tweak to the rear 3/4 view of the new Fisker Karma Surf electric sport hatch. I changed the rear most window from the upswept original, below, to a more "traditional" wagon-type shape. I didn't change the rear hatch window at all. I just used its baseline and followed its natural progression in an upward sweep to the C pillar, adding a wraparound glass effect. I also gave the roof a slight "visor" effect, which carries the eye rearwards emphasizing the cargo area and rear "haunches." I think it simplifies the side profile and the wrapped glass goes perfectly with the rest of the car. I also changed the door handles. For such a highly-styled vehicle, the Fisker's tiny, plain, squared off door "holes" are set too low and ruin the sides of the car to me. I added suicide clamshell doors and a more svelte chrome handle. For such a limited production electric luxury sport vehicle, I don't see why Fisker didn't used dramatic clamshell doors anyway.
The original photo I started with of the new Fisker Karma Surf. I don't care for the upward rising window line used behind the C pillar. I think it fights the overall shape of the wagon. I also don't care for the exceedingly plain door "holes" used as handles. I feel they take the emphasis off the voluptuous fender lines.
- For more information on this new electric car company, Fisker, click here.
Sunday, October 23, 2011
Re-imagining one of William Mitchell's flawless 1965 Cadillacs. Caddy built short-deck 6-window hardtop sedans in 1961, and 4-window short-decks in 62 and '63. They produced full-size 6-window sedans all the way through '64. Though they dropped the short-deck for '64, my chop presumes they decided to try again in '65 with the '61 formula—short-deck, 6-window—though pillared this time. Click on image to enlarge, as always.
C H O P S — Oftentimes, to relax, I'll peruse eBay's cars for sale. I'll pick a "marque of the night," say Mercury, or Hudson, or Nash, and then go through the years and see what is still out there. Tonight I picked Cadillac—1961-72. I was struck how many 6-window sedans Cadillac showed up. They were very light-looking, almost sporty rooflines for such a stately luxury car. I found examples of them for sale right up through 1964, the last year for the bodystyle. It got me thinking of what a 6-window 1965 Cadillac might have looked like. The birth of a chop idea!
I found a good image of an appropriate car, a mint condition low-line '65 Calais pillared sedan, with the proper focus and resolution, thanks to Google Images. My "vision" wasn't quite as easy as just adding the C pillar window, though. Besides adding the extra glass, I ended up lowering the roofline, changing the angle of the C pillar and enlarging the rear window, all in order to get the same "sporty" feeling as those earlier 6-window Caddys.
I liked how it looked at that point, but decided to "step it up a notch" and recreate a little-known version of the Caddy sedan offered in the early '60s. the short-deck. From 1961 through '63 Cadillac offered a version of their sedan with a six-inch shorter trunk for customers with pre-war garages which tended to be smaller than postwar garages. Offered at first in their base Series 62, as a 6-window, for '62 and '63 it was offered only as a 4-window, though a De Ville-level model was added. The base short-deck for '62 was named the Town Sedan and the step-up version, the Park Avenue. For '63, only the Park Avenue was offered. Since I had started out with the low-line '65 Calais, I named this chop the Town Sedan. Besides shortening the trunk, I reshuffled the chrome trim, taking off the mid-body chrome spear and adding chrome rocker panel moldings to further differentiate this shorter sedan from its longer kin.
In the end, I liked the way it came out, but in no way do I think it's "better" than the cars Mitchell approved. The 1965 full sized cars he presented to the world, from Chevy through Pontiac, Oldsmobile, Buick and Cadillac, are all examples of a design manager at the very tippy top of his game. There isn't a bad line on any one of them, and they've all more than withstood the test of time.
- I photographed a derelict '62 Park Avenue more than 20 years ago. For my blog post, click here.
- 1961 Cadillac DeVille info here.
- 1962 Cadillac DeVille info here.
- 1963 Cadillac DeVille info here.
B O N U S 1 0 - M IN U T E C H O P :
A reader, Bobf, mentioned he'd like to see an early '60s Caddy with a fastback roof similar to the '67 and '68 GM full sized coupes. I've thought about a car like that for a while, too. It's difficult to find decent high-resolution photos of older cars, though. I've been checking out '68 Cadillacs on eBay and Hemming's lately, and had in my files this medium-resolution photo of a gold Coupe de Ville. I'm particularly partial to '68s as my father gave me a '68 Hardtop Sedan de Ville for my 20th birthday back in 1977. I loved that car and kept it for about 10 years.
I spent about 10 minutes this morning mocking up a fastback '68 Coupe de Ville to see how it would work, and I love the results. I'll keep looking for a high-resolution photo to start with, and create a real chop one of these days. This car looks like such a natural, it's too bad Caddy didn't offer it in addition to their much more formal coupe. The '68 Buick LeSabre/Wildcat looked awesome with this roofline, especially with the optional fender skirts.
Update: As one of my loyal readers, PaulNYC, pointed out, this could logically have been a return of the "B Body" Cadillac, similar in marketing as the Series 61, discontinued in the early '50s. Perhaps the entry level Calais could have been differentiated more from the De Ville series this way.
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Lincoln MK/LS hybrid sports sedan—Lincoln's long-awaited return to the rear wheel drive luxury sector, this is the second of my Lincoln chops to use my modified naming convention. While I'd love to see a return to full names, I think the shorter alpha and alphanumeric nomenclature is hear to stay for the foreseeable future. This sedan not only recalls the last LS midsize sedan, it's a full "Bells & Whistles" Luxury Sedan, hence the MK/LS name. Rear wheel drive (with optional all wheel drive), hybrid-assisted drivetrains, electronically-assisted suicide doors, 22 inch wheels and a rounded chrome license plate surround that evokes the sparetire "hump" of classic Lincoln Continentals, signify this car's top-shelf status. Hybrid and Twin-Turbo versions would be available from the start, identically priced, as is Lincoln's recent pricing strategy.
B T W :
The fine art of using Photoshop® to create images of new cars, "chopping" as it's called online, can't be any better illustrated than this Lincoln. I started out with the image of the Lexus LF/A sports coupe, above. I don't think there was much left unchanged besides the angle of the windshield from the donor image, lol.
Saturday, October 15, 2011
1961 Cadillac Esprit de Ville Sportwagon—Yes you're right. Cadillac didn't make any factory station wagons in the 1960s. Or 1970s. Or 1980s. And they certainly would never have made a 2-door wagon like this pillarless hardtop. But that's what Photoshop is for!
I absolutely love the way this chop turned out. The original Coupe de Ville I used as a base photo was white with a gray interior, but I made "mine" Fawn Metallic with red leather and cloth, a very striking and elegant combination. Besides the wagon body, I added ribbed stainless steel rocker panel trim and painted the center of the wheelcovers to match the interior color.
I can just see Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra and their luggage, cruising all night to Vegas in this Esprit de Ville for a hot poker game on the Strip. I can also see Lucille Ball or Angie Dickinson using this wagon to pick up a few items on Rodeo Drive!
B T W :
This little Rat Packer would have loved to have been in the back seat for that middle-of-the-night trip to Vegas! (Yes, this is me, in 1962...)
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Chrysler Satellite Hatchback coupe—This is my 3-door version of the recently introduced 5-door Chrysler Delta. The Chrysler Delta is a badge-engineered Lancia Delta, but I would still love to see it imported to the USA. Besides losing the two rear doors, I modified the C pillar, giving it an even more dramatic upturn, and I widened the front Chrysler grille. Chrysler placed its new corporate grille in the same space as Lancia's shield grille, but it's too narrow for my tastes, looking like it's a bit puckered up, so-to-speak. By widening it, I think it looks a bit more "American." I also simplified the under bumper air inlet, making the car appear wider, too. Original press photo here.
I fell in love with Lancias back in the mid 1970s when I was lucky enough to drive a brand new, loaded, Beta coupe for the summer. Lancia is owned by Fiat, which in turn, now owns Chrysler. Most future Chryslers will be based on Fiat platforms. including those from the Fiat brand, Lancia and Alfa-Romeo. In turn, some Chrysler platforms, including its minivan, are currently being sold as Fiats in Europe. There is even a future Maserati crossover SUV that will use a Jeep platform (Jeep is owned by Chrysler). Economies of scale!
N O T E — Please make sure to check out Peter De Lorenzo's Autoextremist.com this week. I have several chops featured in his "On the Table" column. I am always extremely grateful, and humbled, to have a space in such a respected, and well-read, weekly news site for the automotive industry and cognoscenti.
* Planet Claire, by the B52s, first released in '79, the year I graduated from Vassar. Link to their video on YouTube. Lyrics:
She came from Planet Claire
I knew she came from there
She drove a Plymouth Satellite
Faster than the speed of light
Planet Claire has pink air
All the trees are red
No one ever dies there
No one has a head
Some say she's from Mars
Or one of the seven stars
That shine after 3:30 in the morning
WELL SHE ISN'T
She came from Planet Claire
I knew she came from there
She drove a Plymouth Satellite
Faster than the speed of light
Planet Claire has pink air
All the trees are red
No one ever dies there
No one has a head
Some say she's from Mars
Or one of the seven stars
That shine after 3:30 in the morning
WELL SHE ISN'T
Sunday, October 9, 2011
The spectacular, if I do say so myself, lol, Lincoln Continental Mark IX LSC V12 Biturbo sports car concept. Long name, but the hood is even longer!
My latest Lincoln to feature the classic "Parthenon" grille, would "borrow" a twin-turbo Aston-Martin V12, and place it in a carbon-fiber bespoke platform and body. Utilizing a generous 2+2 layout, the interior would feature 4 Recaro bucket seats, upholstered in Nappa leather and Alcantara, with the rear seats electrically foldable. Fitted carbon fiber luggage would take advantage of every nook and cranny in the carpeted luggage area.
This V12 Biturbo LSC would compete with Mercedes-Benz's AMG CL65 and BMW's M6 coupes in luxury, performance and price, and be faster than Cadillac's CTS-V coupe around the Nurburgring. Rear-wheel biased all-wheel drive would ensure all of that power and torque would make it to the business end of the 21" tires and carbon fiber/aluminum wheels. The body would be carbon fiber intensive for a low 3,400 lbs weight, relatively speaking of course, for a V12 performance coupe with all the modern safety and convenience items.
Base photo is Peter Schreyer's gorgeous Kia GT concept, but the only parts "left" were sections of the glass area and wheels. The classic grille is based on the Lincoln Continental Mark III of '68-'71. I think this "throwback" radiator/grille could really be what Lincoln needs to position itself in its market in the 21st century.
Friday, October 7, 2011
Will Lincoln's new "face" be a familiar, and beloved, one?
Lincoln has recently announced that its most recent corporate "face," the bold twin-grilles based on the early '40s Lincolns, will be replaced on its next generation of cars. I have no idea what the replacement will be, but I'd like to see a contemporary version of Lincoln's "Parthenon" grille. While some felt it was a ripoff of the Rolls-Royce radiator shaped grilles, it was stately, and definitely said "Lincoln" when you saw one.
For this chop, I used a Rolls Royce Phantom Coupe for the base of this Continental Mark IX coupe, so yes, I actually did rip-off Rolls' radiator shaped grille, lol. I've been working on a much more avant garde Lincoln coupe, based on the new Kia GT concept car, but it's quite an intense chop, really a cleansheet design study, so to clear my head tonight I decided to work on a quick chop. I love the way it turned out, though!
In addition to the formal grille, eagle-eyed aficionados will recognize classic Lincoln traits such as hidden headlights, a mid-body contour line similar to the '56 Mark II, small vertical powered vent windows, and characteristic wraparound Lincoln Continental taillights. LED running lights in the front fender blades update Lincoln's once ubiquitous wrapped parking lights.
Sunday, October 2, 2011
My version of a new BMW 1-series sport hatch, in a perfect October color. While there are shorter 3- and 5-door 1-Series hatchbacks available in Europe, BMW only imports the slightly longer notchback coupe and convertible to the United States. For this chop, I've lengthened the roof of the coupe to create a svelte hatchback for our domestic market. Darkening the rocker panels, perhaps using carbon-fiber to lessen their weight, creates a longer, thinner-looking car body. I also widened the dual front "kidney" grilles, moving them all the way to the edges of the headlights. I'd like to see BMW go back to a full-width grille, as they were in the '60s and '70s, and changing their trademark "kidneys" back to being a chrome detail in the center.
Thursday, September 22, 2011
Jaguar XP Shooting Brake—Jaguar recently introduced a new concept car, the C-X16 sports car. It's a very pretty car, and supposedly headed for production as a "little brother" to the XK series of sports coupes. Personally, I think it looks too much like the XK. I think Jaguar should differentiate the two sports cars lines a bit more. I've given the C-X16 a long-roof design, or Shooting Brake bodystyle, although it would remain a 2-seater, albeit with more luggage room. Bespoke British fitted luggage, anyone? Click the image to enlarge.
I've also given it a new name, the XP series. I can't be sure, but I think that Jaguar's recent concept names are a clue: C-X16: The "C" probably stands for "concept;" the "X" is the first part of the typical Jaguar name, XF, XJ, and XK; and I think that "16 " stands for the 16th letter of the alphabet, "P." I might be entirely wrong, but I'm betting the new small sports car by Jaguar will be known as the XP series. Not exactly catchy or evocative but entirely "contemporary" nomenclature.
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
The XTS V12 luxury coupe, with a high-torque, ultra-quiet V12 featuring 450 hp. Click images to enlarge.
C H O P S — Cadillac could really use a flagship model to compete with the Mercedes-Benz S Class, BMW's 7-Series, Audi's A8 and similar über luxury machines. Cadillac has recently shown a large sedan called the XTS Platinum, but it's front-wheel drive and will replace their medium-sized cars, the STS and DTS. There have been rumors of a larger rear wheel drive car being developed, but it's quite far down the pipeline if it really exists at all.
I've used a photo of the XTS Platinum concept sedan to create this larger pillarless coupe model, the XTC. That longer hood would now house a bespoke V12 in two states of tune: a "normal" rating of 450 hp, and a V-Series sport model with twin superchargers and 600 hp. The V-Series would take on Mercedes AMG division, and take the CTS-V's stellar performance image even further. The interiors would feature beautiful matte- or gloss-finished woods with V-Series featuring either polished carbon-fiber or piano-black lacquer trim.
My naming choice might be a bit confusing, as this large coupe would be placed above the front-wheel drive XTS sedan, but I just couldn't resist the XTC moniker—I'm sure the owners will be in ecstasy behind the wheel, lol.
The ultra-high performance model, the XTC V-Series, featuring a twin-supercharged V12 with 600 hp.
B T W :
For those of you that aren't quite sure what I do to create my cars, this is the photo I began with. I use copyright-free publicity shots of cars, and then manipulate them in Photoshop to create the cars I wish were available today. You'll notice that besides having 4-doors versus 2-doors, the hood of the real car is much shorter than mine. That's because the XTS sedan has a V6 front wheel drive drivetrain, versus my V12 rear- or all-wheel drive platform. I've also changed the roofline/C pillar and many other details to make my coupe all casey/artandcolour.
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
Based on the Evos concept, this 2014 Mustang GT 5.0 clay prototype was recently snapped in Dearborn by one of casey/artandcolour's spy photographers as it was about to be reviewed by FoMoCo execs.
Or I just photoshopped it from a photograph, lol. I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out, but I'm going to give it another shot when I have time, and bring the rear wheels forward about 6-inches. I left the wheelbase from the Evos, but I think it needs to be shortened for a Mustang. I lengthened the hood by about 8-inches from the Evos, but in hindsight, the wheelbase still looks too long to me.
It's pretty hard redesigning an Icon, even if only in Photoshop!
Sunday, September 11, 2011
VW recently introduced its newest tiny car, the Up! hatchback (yes, the name includes the exclamation point). The production car seats 4, but I've lowered it and raked the rear C pillar forward, limiting seating to two. The rear space could be used for luggage or for the battery pack in a future electric or hybrid version. I chose the name "Churada," a fierce monsoon wind-and-rain squall in the Mariana Islands. VW has a tradition of using names of winds for its cars, such as the Golf (the German name for the Gulf Stream) and Scirocco (an african wind). In addition to lowering the car, I've moved the door handles up into the B pillar, added black/chrome rocker panel trim, made the LED taillights a bit more dramatic, and enlarged the wheels, blacking out portions of the rim for a more custom look. I also gave the VW logo on the wheels a body color background, a touch reminiscent of the paint-detailed wheel covers of luxury cars of the past.
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Adding a high-style and trendy four-door "coupe" might be a good next step in Buick's climb to Lexus-like status. The quality of Buick's current cars is rapidly approaching the big "L" and if you ask me, their styling is already superior. This LaCrosse-based Invicta would just step it up a notch.
The doors are accessed by "hidden" handles—slim, chromed vertical handles, situated along the window line. Slip your fingers inside the handle, applying just a slight pressure as if to pull the door open and the electronic power mechanism actuates, opening the doors. Closing them would require just a slight pull or tug; the doors would then be softly powered closed. They could also be opened and closed via the electronic key fob.
A slim, full-length chrome molding, tying the headlights and taillights into the bodyside "sweepspear," adds a touch of old-world class to this new-world automobile.
B T W :
Before I finalized the black Invicta at the top, I was working the design with a two-tone paint job, a classic Charcoal-over-Dark Copper. I'd like to see a return of creative and contemporary two-tone paint jobs. This image lacks many of the details from the final version at the top of this post. You'll notice these changes in the car as well as the background. I'd say an additional two hours of work went into the final, black version, for approximately eight total hours.
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Not a new chop, but I haven't posted it at my car site before. This is a 2-door version of the current Lincoln MKZ, although I've changed the name back to Zephyr. I really would like this current era of alpha-numeric model names to end. Please bring back evocative, romantic, even whimsical names for our personal transportation devices. Zephyr is a million times better name than MKZ... right?
Besides the obvious door change, I've made the coupe more of a fastback and added chrome/argent rocker panel trim. The majority of contemporary cars have body-colored side panels from roof to ground, lending them a very thick look. This thick look, in my opinion, is an effort to make them look more like cocoons, or tanks, to purvey a feeling of safety. I prefer a leaner side treatment, more like the cars of my youth, the Sixties and Seventies. This lower body, full-length treatment accomplishes my goal. It also makes this relatively compact automobile look longer and lower.
Saturday, July 23, 2011
Mercedes Benz CLSK/h—Daimler Benz's smallest 4-door coupe, the CLSK, in performance Hybrid form. I used the just-released C63 AMG Black Series coupe as a base image. I deleted the unnecessary fender vents, reduced the quad exhaust to a more manageable dual exhaust and deeper rear bumper. Speakers for the new "audible" Hybrid laws coming online shortly would be hidden in these chromed exhaust outlets. I changed the pillared coupe bodystyle to a 5-door hatchback for this premium compact hybrid performance/luxury/economy sedan.
Friday, July 22, 2011
Bentley Mulsanne Executive—Bentley's newest owner-driven sedan, the new Executive is 12 inches shorter and 500 lbs less than the Mulsanne it is based on. Taking off about a foot of rear overhang and smoothing the rear fender into this new shorter trunk space, accentuates the current Mulsanne's body themes. This shorter car has a stance that begs the owner to take it out on the road.
In the interest of design simplicity, I deleted the outermost pair of headlights. I'm sure the main headlight's 24-bulb and LED array can accommodate the additional lighting features, lol. I made the fog lights placement relate to the main headlights in a more simple manner, too, cleaning up the front end's facets and jewels. "Coach" doors, or suicide openings, are of course present; electrically-operated. Severely utilitarian 15-spoke case aluminum wheels round out this special nod to Bentley's storied owner-drivers.
Executive sedan available with V8 Twin Turbo Hybrid; V10 Twin Turbodiesel; and QuadCharge W12, for maximum performance.
Newest Mini, the Coupe, detailed the artandcolour way. I changed the roof from red to black, the wheel well flares from black to gray, I blackened out portions of the wheel rims, and I detailed the rocker panel trim to better complement the wheels. I think this new production Mini Coupe is hot! I hope it's available in a version that looks something like mine.
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Even though Autoblog won't give me the time of day, lol, they just posted an item saying that Infiniti is planning a compact platform—another of my previously created chops. It would compete with Audi's A3, a smallish hatchback in Europe, and a somewhat larger 5-door in the USA. Apparently Infiniti will use a design language introduced on the Etherea concept. My D20 was conceived before the Etherea, so it's more "generic" in design, but follows the generally smooth look of their current G- and M-series.