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[Herald Design Forum 2022] From mobility to personal space, vehicle function continues to evolve

Sept. 27, 2022 - 17:51 By Hong Yoo

Yoon Il-hun, vice president of HMC Genesis Design Group, explains key design features of Genesis at the Herald Design Forum 2022 at the Shilla Hotel in Seoul on Tuesday. (Lee Sang-sub/ The Korea Herald)

The key function of a car will continue to evolve from being a means of transportation to a personalized living space, said Yoon Il-hun, vice president of HMC Genesis Design Group at the Herald Design Forum 2022 held on Tuesday in Seoul.

“As a car becomes a space for living, the purpose of a car will evolve infinitely without boundaries," said Yoon. "This is where we are seeing growing needs from our consumers, and we are focusing on such a key design pillar — the beauty of white space when it comes to designing the interior of our Genesis brand,” he said.

Genesis GV70 is the model that best portrays the beauty of white space, he said.

Genesis designers got rid of various indoor air vents and instead placed only one on each side and two at the center of the front deck, he added.

The brand also minimized design features and manual buttons on the floor and center console to provide a cozy space for passengers.

“Our designers are studying user experience and coming up with seats that can turn around to allow back seat passengers and front seat passengers to talk facing each other, or a theater inside the car by placing a big screen and sophisticated sound system," he said. "This is a sketch that we used to not believe could be an interior design of a car --but now, it is a design that can be realized.”

Yoon is a renowned and experienced car designer who previously worked for Mercedes-Benz as an exterior designer from 2003-2013. He also worked with Bentley from 2013-2016. Some of his famous pieces include Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren Stirling Moss and the 9th generation S-Class.

Bak Su-re, a former user experience (UX) designer at Porsche, also took part in the forum and presented the concept of a car as 3.3 square meters of mobile personal space.

“A car not only transports us to diverse places, but it also provides us with a private space that is isolated from the outside world. Likewise, to design such a private space, we need to study people," he said.

Bak Su-re, former user experience (UX) designer of Porsche, describes car as 3.3 square meters of personal space. (Lee Sang-sub/ The Korea Herald)

"As lifestyle trends change, the interior design of a car changes as well. For example, in the past when smoking in the car was prevalent, cars used to have ashtrays. But now, these ashtrays are gone and instead there are USB ports,” Bak pointed out.

After graduating with a master’s degree in industrial design from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, Bak has worked as a UX designer for LG Electronics, Zigzag GmBH, and Porsche.