BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--When form and function elegantly combine to create a sense of grace under pressure, the results are breathtaking.
On Thursday at the Boston Museum of Science, the fourth stop on the “Lincoln MKC: Engage Your Senses” tour presented designers from two disparate disciplines – luxury automotive and bridge design – discussing how best to combine beautiful design and science to create stunning products.
Panelists Peter Jones, advanced interior design manager for The Lincoln Motor Company, and Miguel Rosales, president and principal designer of Rosales & Partners, each agreed that the artful, balanced marriage of form and function distinguishes and elevates the final result in each discipline.
The engaging dialogue was moderated by Audrey O’Hagan, founder of Audrey O’Hagan Architects LLC and past president of the Boston Society of Architects.
Both Jones and Rosales were integral members of teams tasked with creating all-new objects.
Jones was part of a team that created a warm, open and inviting environment for the all-new Lincoln MKC, the brand’s first small premium utility, while Rosales elevated the aesthetic appeal of the Leonard P. Zakim Bunker Hill Memorial Bridge.
Each discipline used design and engineering to create new solutions that are both functional and beautiful.
One example of how design and engineering came together on the Lincoln MKC is found in the execution of the gear shifter. Instead of a traditional shifter, the Lincoln MKC employs buttons.
“The traditional gear shifter is a mechanical device that is simply out of place when creating a luxurious interior space for an all-new vehicle,” said Jones. “Successful engineering and design collaboration resulted in a great technical and aesthetic solution where the customer has gained storage that before was impossible.”
Rosales said it was refreshing to design a bridge that emphasized aesthetics as well as function. The Zakim Bunker Hill Memorial Bridge, inspired by bridge design usually seen in Europe, serves as the northern entrance and exit to Boston.
“We were able to spend a lot of time on the proportions and shaping of the bridge,” said Rosales. “We wanted to create a true landmark that would create an emotional connection with people.
“Traditionally, ‘European’ design, either in bridges or cars, has been perceived as more advanced and sophisticated. I believe the Zakim Bridge and the new Lincoln MKC are examples of how U.S. designers, engineers and companies can achieve the same level of aesthetic quality and performance.”
Jones said that automotive designers are often inspired by architecture and the forms of well-designed buildings.
“A bridge can be a landmark; a means by which to navigate. The image of a memorable bridge can be both a symbolic and physical representation of a city,” said Jones. “Similarly, the characteristics of a luxury automobile are both a symbolic and physical representation of the brand. There is no substitute for good proportion, for pedigree; that’s what captivates customers and begins the emotional adventure with a car.
“The new Lincoln MKC is athletic yet graceful like a dancer or endurance athlete. The wide track, sweeping roofline and sculptured body surfaces are a reflection of a younger market’s enthusiasm for health and well-being. Cues like the split-wing grille, thin full-width tail lamp and meticulous detailing advance the spirit of familiar Lincoln styling.”
And just as a beautiful bridge invites you into the city with promise perhaps of adventure or just a general enjoyable experience, so, too, does the exterior of a luxury vehicle invite you inside to experience it.
“We were intent on creating a seamless transition from exterior to the interior,” said Jones. “We referenced the exterior design language and subtly expressed it in volumes that created space, roominess and lightness, with materials and finishes that make the MKC interior a unique and inviting experience.
“The instrument panel mirrors the split-wing grille gesture to accentuate interior width and overall harmony. This layered top surface creates a panoramic viewpoint for the driver and a visual connection to the doors. We cantilevered the center finish panel to open up even more space on the console, knowing that customers really value storage for phones and other personal items.”
Relentless attention to detail and quality materials separate luxury automotive design.
New Deepsoft leather, developed exclusively for the Lincoln MKC by renowned leather manufacturer Bridge of Weir®, authentic open-pore wood trim and unique door-panel stitching elevate the elegance of the interior.
The all-new leather-wrapped steering wheel with a softer, thicker grip is available in hand-stitched Wollsdorf® leather.
“Well-proportioned, crafted design is timeless, whether seen in a luxury automobile or a beautiful landmark bridge,” Jones said.
Previously, the “Engage Your Senses” tour stopped in Miami for a visit with celebrity chef Minerva Vazquez and then in Atlanta as personal service was explored with the staff of the Mandarin Oriental Atlanta Hotel.
The third stop, Washington, D.C., highlighted design with Rob Brown and Todd Davis of Brown Davis Interiors LLC. The tour wraps up next week in Chicago. The all-new 2015 Lincoln MKC is scheduled to be on sale in Lincoln showrooms this summer.
About The Lincoln Motor Company
The Lincoln Motor Company is the luxury automotive brand of Ford Motor Company, committed to creating compelling vehicles with an exceptional ownership experience to match. The Lincoln Motor Company is in the process of introducing four all-new vehicles through 2016. For more information about The Lincoln Motor Company, please visit media.lincoln.com or www.lincoln.com. Follow us on Facebook at facebook.com/lincoln.