Ford GloCar Concept

From Ford press: Ford is taking the art of color to a more intense level with a concept car that uses LED lights to change body panel colors, intensity and frequency, all in the name of safety and user preferences.

As part of “National Design Triennial: Inside Design Now,” on display at New York's Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, Ford’s Brand Imaging Group is showing the GloCar, a translucent concept vehicle intended to push the boundaries of automotive design and predict the future of consumer needs.

Nearly 100 years ago, Henry Ford let his color preference be known with the legendary quote: “You can have any color as long as it’s black.” Launched in the spring of 2002, GloCar challenges the icon by being any color except black. Clad in injection-molded translucent plastic panels, it uses LED lights to change the body panel color, intensity and frequency in response to safety conditions and user preferences. The driver can either stand out or blend in.

The customizable GloCar was designed to be safe, fun and evoke emotion. “The soft glowing panels serve as a safety feature to make you very visible at night,” said Laurens van den Acker, chief designer at Ford’s Brand Imaging Group. “The rear panel doubles as a brake light, and the side panels as blinkers. When somebody comes too close, the panels increase in intensity, signaling the driver to keep a distance.”

The only automobile on display at the exhibit, the GloCar is built around a lightweight aluminum space frame with aluminum extrusions and castings. It is powered by fuel cell technology.

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