The designer behind the Tesla car: How to design an electric car from scratch

[Abstract] Model S is currently in hot sale, and the booking for Model X has already begun. What is the next step? The third generation will essentially start from scratch.
Unlike other electric vehicles that had previous fuel models as the basis, Tesla's cars were completely zero-based. The inability to draw inspiration from previous designs poses more challenges for Tesla's designs, but it also brings with it more freedom that may be a key advantage. Tesla's Model S is the first design to start from scratch, and behind it is Franz von Holzhausen, Tesla's chief designer.

Von Holzhausen explained why he was interested in this project. "The automotive world needs change, and Tesla is heading for a greener, more stable environment. I wouldn't have done that in Mazda, GM or the masses, so I joined Tesla."

When asked about the design challenges of the first Tesla car, he explained the reasons for the difficulties and their design goals.

"Designing a car is one thing. Designing the first car for a growing company is another matter. My goal: to rely on the power of design. This is the idea of ​​'moths': You I don't know why it was attracted to it, but I couldn't help but it led to an emotional response."

It also needs a degree of recognition so that consumers can remember the brand when they see the car: There is no doubt that this is a Tesla. As you approach the car, your inner feelings start to rise, because the Model S senses your proximity and extends the door handle to welcome you. “When you approach the car, this is your first experience with it and it needs to be very memorable. The first intersection between you and the car should not be the cheapest part.”

tesla model s door handle video

Tesla is currently designing the Model X and has 7 seats. "Nobody wants a van, so we thought: How do you make a car more like a popular SUV?" said von Holzhausen. The Model X has a falcon-winged door that is similar to a gull-winged car, but has two hinges instead of one. The door has sensors so it will not hit the garage roof and doors.

The user experience on the Model X dashboard has also been highlighted, with the main focus on the huge 17-inch touchscreen. why?

"The screens in the car have always failed: they are small and difficult to use. The driver does not want three or four clicks; it is dangerous," explained von Holzhausen. "Some of the most important features are on the screen at the same time. We can continuously improve the user experience through updates and slow down the aging of cars."

Model S is currently in hot sale, and the booking for Model X has already begun. What is the next step? The third generation will essentially start from scratch. It is certain that Tesla will gain experience from the previous two generations, but the next generation will adopt a new platform. Von Holzhausen has no quips about this; starting from scratch designing an electric car, he can be more creative.

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