ID. Crozz design check.
ID. Crozz design check.
The electric concept car glides through the streets of Los Angeles like something out of a science fiction film. Almost silent. But definitely not unnoticed. Because the ID. Crozz electric CUV¹ boasts a spectacular design you simply can’t ignore. Its creators, Diana Zynda, Cihan Akcay and Vagarsh Saakyan know exactly what makes it so stunning.
When a fashion trend takes hold in California, it often goes on to conquer the whole world. Especially if it captures Los Angeles. More people drive electric cars there than anywhere else. And nowhere is an innovative lifestyle as much a part of everyday life as it is on the streets of LA. Which makes it the perfect place to showcase the new Volkswagen ID. family. A family that fits you and your life perfectly. Its members: the ID. Neo, the compact car. The ID. Buzz, the VW Bus of the future. And out in front, the ID. Crozz, an elegant CUV1. Due to launch in 2020, Volkswagen wants these three models to electrify your everyday life. They incorporate some of the most advanced technologies available, including an innovative electric drive system and autonomous driving mode². The first thing you’ll probably notice, however, is the new design. But why? The Volkswagen design team has developed a concept that unites form, functionality and freedom. And brings a glimpse of tomorrow to the roads of today. “We have developed our own design language that differs from the range of regular combustion engine vehicles", explains Volkswagen exterior designer, Cihan Akcay. “The ID. models we have just unveiled boast a huge range of features that link back to this concept.”
The three ID. vehicles are parked in the “Golden Shore” car park, right on the coast at Long Beach. Passers-by stop in their tracks and stare in amazement at the futuristic electric vehicles. But why are they so fascinated? What makes the design of the ID. Crozz so different to that of other modern vehicles? “The ID. Crozz takes the Volkswagen design to a whole new level”, says Cihan Akcay. Volkswagen’s traditional solid lines have been replaced by a curve that runs right the way along the side of the ID. Crozz, drawing the eye toward areas like the wheels. “This curve starts at the rear wing panel, goes into a deep contour along the side of the vehicle and then picks back up again from the shoulderline and across the front wing panel. The two lines make the same movement, but aren't actually parallel.” And these features not only adorn the sides of the ID. Crozz. “You can also see this 3D curve from the top. Despite its SUV³-like design, the ID. Crozz is actually very aerodynamic and efficient.”
The light signature of the ID. Crozz and the other two ID. models is so unique that you can spot it a mile off. “Light speaks to people on an emotional level. Lighting is therefore becoming an increasingly important factor. Our design helps the ID. Crozz in particular to distinguish itself from the crowd of other vehicles", explains Cihan Akcay. The LED headlights are connected by a light strip. In the centre sits an illuminated Volkswagen logo – another new addition with the ID. family. “In daylight, the ID. Crozz is a real showstopper, but the light design details come into their own at night. When the lights are switched on, the Volkswagen emblem begins to pulse. The light strip then starts to awaken, spreading out from the centre. All across the entire front. LEDs pick out the contours of the headlights. This creates an illuminated, distinctive face for Volkswagen that welcomes the driver and invites them to connect on an emotional level.”
The red metallic finish on the ID. Crozz is another highlight of the new design. “Red symbolises boldness and attracts attention. The colour is an expression of the pride we have in our first electric CUV1. We also wanted to do away with the cliché that a futuristic look means cooler colours. The material design of the ID. Crozz exudes comfort and warmth”, says Diana Zynda, team leader in the Electric Vehicles Colour and Trim department at Volkswagen. “Our designers are always on the lookout for new trends and material concepts. We also have an excellent relationship with Volkswagen Research and the Future Labs (departments that create the company’s visions for the future), which helps us to be as innovative as possible. We can precisely filter down where material trends are moving and then integrate this into our new models.” Another typical feature of the ID. family is the two-tone colour scheme. “On the ID. Crozz, we have a contrasting black roof that makes the vehicle’s silhouette appear flatter. The silver roof frame and C-pillars contrast with the rest of the ID. Crozz body. This design element gives all of the ID. models a unique contour”, adds Cihan Akcay.
The ID. Crozz has no B-pillars. The front doors open to 90 degrees and the rear doors glide out parallel to the vehicle. This means you can see the entire interior at once. “This gives passengers a variety of easy ways to get into the vehicle", says Vagarsh Saakyan, interior designer of the ID. Crozz. The designers have kept to a subtle grey shade inside the car – grey fixtures, grey fabrics. “For us, grey is the new black”, says Diana Zynda. “This is part of our strategy for electric vehicles, and the ID. Crozz in particular.” You can also see the design signature of the ID. Crozz reflected in its interior elements. One example is the red decorative stitching: “the Alcantara seats have a special padding design that creates a more cosy atmosphere. With thoughts turning to autonomous driving² and our holistic mobility concept, Volkswagen is changing its priorities in the interior. New smart materials have expanded our scope as material designers considerably”, explains Zynda.
Less is more. And the lack of B-pillars gives the ID. Crozz more room for spontaneity. “The ID. Crozz’s ‘Open Space’ concept provides flexible room division options and therefore considerably more space: the rear seats can be adjusted to free up additional room. The adjustable centre console can be moved forward and back. This gives drivers entirely new ways to divide the space”, explains Vagarsh Saakyan. “This purism continues into the fixtures – we have done away with wood and chrome elements completely.” Another thing missing is physical buttons and switches. Touch functionality makes using the high-gloss surfaces natural and intuitive. “As interior designers, we have had to take completely new approaches and leave our comfort zone. We have revised every interior element in the ID. Crozz, questioned every function – do we need it or not?”
As the daylight fades in Long Beach, the interior of the ID. Crozz slowly begins to illuminate. “The light strips in the roof developed by the light design team are not only there for illumination. Depending on the driving mode – autonomous² or manual – the light in the interior changes colour and intensity, creating a kind of animation,” explains Vagarsh Saakyan. Practical. If you want to sit and read a book while in autonomous mode², for example, the light dims and pulses completely naturally. The lighting concept also adds to the vehicle’s fun factor: if you switch the ID. Crozz into off-road or manual sport mode, it illuminates orange. And with supporting functions, such as navigation information and warnings, it is particularly helpful back on the road too. It creates an intuitive and emotional form of communication between car and driver. “We call it ‘Interactive Light’ – a feature we are introducing for the first time with the ID. Crozz.”
The designers have specially developed each and every component in the ID. Crozz to offer maximum freedom. Diana Zynda summarises their work on the electric concept car: “For the ID. Crozz, it was a development process that went beyond the team. Due to the new design language, we had to take new paths. It was the only way we could harmonise the form and material.” Vagarsh Saakyan, too, sees the ID. family as a successful result for the project. And not only with regard to their approach to working and innovative technology: “Volkswagen is putting people and their changing mobility needs front and centre. We are now delivering our response to what people really are imagining in terms of electro-mobility and autonomous driving².”