Automotive Design and Production

APR 2018

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NO BORING CARS. Much of the motive behind the fundamental change that's been occurring starts at the top of the company, as Akio Toyoda has famously said that he no longer wants the company to produce "boring cars." And there's no better support for doing things more creatively when the president of the company, who happens to have his company's name on the proverbial door (yes, his surname uses a "D" where the brand has a "T"), makes it some- thing of a must. Hunter acknowledges of the change, "A lot of it is Akio Toyoda," explaining, "He's pretty much given designers more freedom to create bolder statements. Let's face it: our designs were pretty boring. We were making really good products, but not very exciting products." Realize that Hunter has been at Calty since 1982, so the frank admission of creating high-quality but low-excitement vehicles isn't a trivial remark. One of the internal issues was a concern with polarizing customers by coming out with something that might be deemed to be too extreme. Now, it is somewhat different. "We're OK with polarization. We just have to get enough people to love what we're doing." That is, although Hunter says that they're "taking more risk, creating more bold design statements," they're still in the business of designing, engineering, producing and selling cars, crossovers and trucks. So the objective isn't to offend, but to come up with designs for products that people can feel One of the cars styled at Calty that shows how Toyota is transforming its approach to design is the 2018 Camry, shown here coming off the line at the company's plant in Georgetown, Kentucky. 26 COVER STORY

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