Future of UK car design debated at Coventry University

Future of UK car design debated at Coventry University
Research news

Thursday 08 December 2016

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Eminent motoring scribe Steve Cropley chaired a debate on the future of car design at Coventry University this morning.

The event, which heralded the launch in spring next year of the university’s National Transport Design Centre, brought together automotive industry luminaries to discuss the current and future state of the UK vehicle design sector.

A recent collaborative report by Coventry University and the Automotive Council UK found that the industry will face a shortfall in creative skills unless more is done to support the training and recruitment of new talent into roles like digital modelling.

Cropley, who is editor-in-chief of Autocar magazine, chaired a panel of experts including George Gillespie, chief executive of HORIBA MIRA, and David Hilton, senior design director of pioneering Chinese electric carmaker NextEV.

Coventry University’s Dr Cyriel Diels, a specialist in human factors in automotive design, also joined the panel – he said:

We’re living through a time of radical change in the automotive and transportation industry, particularly considering how the design of vehicles is having to adapt with the emergence of new technologies. This was a really invigorating debate exploring where the automotive design industry is heading, and how it might address some of the considerable challenges it faces – not least with the dawn of connected and autonomous vehicles.”

The NTDC, which is being funded through the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership and the government's multimillion pound Local Growth Deal, is aiming to boost the predicted skills gap in the industry. It will form a key facility for the university’s Centre for Mobility and Transport, which carries out research into the design and engineering of future transport systems. 

Key areas of focus will include new master’s degrees in transport design, and collaborative R&D projects with business.


For further press information, please contact Alex Roache, senior media officer, Coventry University, on +44 (0)24 7765 5050 or email alex.roache@coventry.ac.uk.