Toyota uBox concept designed by university students

14 Apr 2016 Car News

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Toyota uBox concept designed by university students

A program that allows students to design a car is Toyota’s new approach to market research. The result is a whacky but innovative design called the uBox.

What do you get when you put a bunch of creative Generation Z university students in a room with the tools to create a car? One whacky car design.

Toyota has teamed up with students from Clemson University International Centre for Automotive Research in South Carolina, USA, to create a car. It’s a novel way of working out what the future market of car-buyers will look for in a car.

The result is the Toyota uBox concept car – and while it looks a bit crumpled-up, it’s a fully electric, customizable, hand-built vehicle.

It’s fairly safe to say the uBox won’t be for those who want to blend in. The lightweight, carbon fibre car sits between an SUV and a van, with some hints of military vehicle design.

It took the students of Clemson University two years to design and hand-build the car which includes plenty of features we may see in the future, but perhaps the most successful are the structural rails used to support the glass roof made from a composite of carbon fibre and aluminium – a first for the automotive industry.

The car features an electric powertrain that doubles as a power source for mobile devices and tools, customizable interiors via the use of 3D printing and seats which can be removed or rearranged thanks to inbuilt sliding rails.

In playing to the market that wants a practical car for the working week that can evolve for recreational use on weekends, the uBox does just that and is expected to target the next generation of buyers entering the market in 2020.

Now read about another creative car concept, the Toyota Setsuna.