More than 300 entries from 80 countries were submitted for Michelin’s “Le Mans 2030: Design for the Win,” and after months of judging, China’s Tao Ni was chosen as the winner of the futuristic design challenge for his Infiniti prototype.
A panel of 11 voters, including designers from BMW, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Peugeot Citroen, Nissan, and Michelin narrowed the field to a podium represented by Ni in first place with his shape-shifting Infiniti, Portugal’s Daniel Bacelar Pereira in second place with the stunning Bentley 9 Plus Michelin Battery Slick (below), and third place with the Cierzo C1 (bottom) penned by Canada’s Kurt Scanlan.
“The winners of our 2017 Michelin Challenge Design presented numerous highly innovative features for the Le Mans race in the year 2030 and the quality of work from this year’s entries was truly outstanding,” said Thom Roach, vice president of original-equipment marketing for Michelin North America. “We congratulate the winners for their thought-provoking, visually captivating designs for the world’s greatest endurance race, Le Mans 24 Hours.”
Ni’s winning design received high marks for the autonomous driving technology that was incorporated into its specification, and will be recognized by Michelin for its achievement at the 2017 24 Hours of Le Mans. Ni, Pereira, and Scanlan will also be invited to attend January’s North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit where they will be honored at the tire manufacturer’s Designer’s Reception.
Due to the high volume of quality submissions, Michelin’s panel also chose 10 designs for honorable mention. The latest design challenge, which marks the 16th year of the competition, has attracted 9,901 entries from 123 counties.