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Michelin Challenge Design

January 6, 2012


Utilizing its position as a leading member of the automotive industry, Michelin offers a challenge each year to designers around the world, from individuals to small and large companies, to enthusiastically create, bring forward and display significant design work that would normally not have an opportunity to be shown.

The 2012 Michelin Challenge Design at NAIAS theme is "City 2046: Art, Life and Ingenuity"

Today more than 3 billion people — about half the world's population — live in urban areas. By 2046 that number is expected to grow to more than 6 billion people, and most city dwellers will live in megacities as varied as Paris and Rio de Janeiro.

Designers will be called upon to help address practical urban transportation needs and global concerns for safety and sustainability, but beauty, elegance and innovation are essential ingredients of automotive design. These have the power to drive the allure of travel, passion for personal vehicles and harmony between vehicles and their environments.

In 2046, 100 years after Michelin's invention of the radial tire in 1946, city dwellers will find many public and private options for transportation. We challenged participants to create a desirable, safe and sustainable vehicle that could inspire as well as transport, selecting one of five megacities as a backdrop.

Choosing between Los Angeles, Mumbai, Paris, Rio de Janeiro or Shanghai, participants were asked to design a personal ground-based vehicle capable of transporting between two and ten people, one that provides a solution to transportation issues in the chosen city and advances the beauty and passion of automotive design.


  • The Michelin Challenge Design exhibit at NAIAS is located on the Concourse of Cobo Center.
  • More than 1,800 entries from 64 countries were received.
  • A nine-person international jury chose the selected entries for display.
  • Drawings from 27 individuals and companies are represented.
  • Concept vehicles are on display from Honda, Renault and Tata Technologies. Schneider Electric is displaying an EV charging station.
  • Works on display came from designers in 12 countries: Argentina, China, France, Guatemala, India, Iran, Japan, South Korea, Turkey, United Kingdom and the United States.
  • Works from students from the College for Creative Studies (CCS) are on display, selected from the 23rd Annual Michelin Design Competition for CCS students.


  1. Concept models, in scale and full-size form
  2. Concepts in two dimensions
  3. Sketches, computer-generated renderings, engineering drawings


  1. OEM design studios
  2. Independent design studios
  3. Individual designers
  4. Academic transportation design students and teams
  5. Automotive suppliers


The 2013 Michelin Challenge Design began with pre-registration in October 2011.

The 2013 Michelin Challenge Design theme is: HALF! Lightweight with a Passion

As consumers and governments push for dramatic gains in fuel efficiency, the automotive industry is looking to design and develop lightweight next-generation vehicles.

Designers create the inspirational forms that drive desire for vehicle ownership, but they will also contribute to lightweight vehicle development through materials choices and using the most effective manufacturing techniques. Successful design relies on closer cooperation between design, engineering, manufacturing and planning than ever before.

For the 2013 Michelin Challenge Design, participants are asked to explore the potential of lightweight vehicle development by designing a family vehicle capable of transporting between four and six people. The vehicle must meet consumer demands for safety and comfort, be usable on the current road infrastructure, and be production feasible using materials, powertrain solutions, or manufacturing solutions that are in use today or in development for use in the foreseeable future.

Michelin is looking to recognize exciting and passionate designs that employ innovative vehicle architecture for weight reduction, without compromising safety or comfort. The vehicle's lightweight characteristics must extend to the tire/wheel assembly, including dimensional specifications and visual detail of the tire/wheel assembly.


About Michelin
Dedicated to the improvement of sustainable mobility, Michelin ( designs, manufactures and sells tires for every type of vehicle, including airplanes, automobiles, bicycles, earthmovers, farm equipment, heavy duty trucks, motorcycles and the space shuttle. The company also publishes travel guides, maps and atlases covering Europe, Asia, Africa and North America. Headquartered in Greenville, S.C., Michelin North America employs approximately 20,900 and operates 18 major manufacturing plants in 16 locations.


For more information, visit or contact:

Lynne Fowler
Michelin North America, Inc.
Office: 1 864 458 6365
Cell: 1 864 561 9914

Stephanie Brinley
EMC Strategic Communications
Office: 1-248-816-0108
Cell: 1-248-703-8172

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