Grilles Gone Wild [VIDEO]: A Frontal View of the 2013 New York International Auto Show

Photos and collage by Micah Schmidt

Photos and collage by Micah Schmidt

The first thing you notice about the Hyundai HCD-14 Genesis Concept is its imposing face. That futuristic four-bar grille is hard to ignore. It’s big. It’s aggressive. It’s complex. The glinting flat lines feature thin needle-like eyes on either side. Look closely between the lines to see the truly intricate design work — a rugged range of pyramid-shaped pits and peaks in perforated dark metal. “It’s a bit brutal, it’s a bit out there,” said Christopher Chapman, chief designer for Hyundai Design North America. “We’re kind of shark-nosing at front a little bit.” A striking snout no doubt, but not entirely non-traditional, according to Chapman: the shape of the polished stainless steel grate stays true to Hyundai’s usual hexagonal look, if just barely. Left and right lines bend very subtly to make it a full six sides. “This is a concept car,” Chapman said, “so we’re allowed to play around a little bit with the materials.” By the looks of things at the 2013 New York International Auto Show, designers have been playing around a lot, especially with regard to the grille. Continue reading

Pretty On The Inside, the 2014 Corvette Stingray [VIDEO]

Photo by Micah Schmidt/Blouin ArtInfo

Photo by Micah Schmidt/Blouin ArtInfo

Over its storied 60-year history, the Corvette has come to mean many things: speed, power, physique — in essence, the quintessential American sports car. Interior design? Not so much. It’s Helen Emsley’s job to change that. Continue reading

Designer John Varvatos Remakes the Chrysler 300 In His Own Titanium Image

Designer John Varvatos and Chrysler Brand President and CEO Saad Chehab introduce the 2013 Chrysler 300C John Varvatos Limited and Luxury Edition VehiclesYou might recognize the distinctive hand-stitching inside this limited-production Chrysler 300C. “It’s something that we’ve done in leather jackets before,” said fashion designer John Varvatos. The high-end men’s clothier insists on this sort of artisan detailing, in everything from suede boots to wool suits. Now, he’s sewing the same aesthetic into an elite fleet of shadowy custom-designed cruisers, outfitted with fine Italian leather, shiny black bezels and a glossy phantom black tri-coat paint job that’s as reflective as Varvatos’s own shaved dome. Continue reading

Battle of the Star Cars: Original ‘Batmobile’ vs. Clark Gable’s Gullwing

Batmobile 1 - Photo Credit Jana DeHartNot all winged things are exactly alike, but George Barris’s original “Batmobile” has a lot in common with Clark Gable’s 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing Coupe. Both classic cars come from the same era. Like Gable’s purdy-bird Benz, Barris’s tricked-out Lincoln Futura concept car, famously driven to points of absurdity by caped crusader Adam West in the campy ’60s TV series, carries the same model year: 1955. Both cars come loaded with star-power: one is made exclusively for Hollywood, the other is made exclusively of Hollywood. And last week both sold for millions of dollars. Here’s how the two star cars stacked up…. Continue reading

Rear View: Tesla’s Sexy Model S Looks Even Better From the Back

TeslaModelSFor an electric car, Tesla Model S gets a lot of juice….“It’s wide, long, low, and looks great – especially from the rear,” said Motor Trend Editor-in-Chief Edward Loh, drawing chuckles from assembled gawkers, during a videotaped presentation at Manhattan’s Skylight West Studios, where the stylish plug-in was crowned Motor Trend Car of the Year.  (“I’m an ass man,” Loh later joked.) Crouching behind the taillights of a cherry red showroom model parked on stage, the head of the nation’s top hot-rod read went into graphic detail about the sexy sedan’s more striking backside attributes. Continue reading