The American brand introduced the Buick Wildcat EV concept, an expressive vision of the brand’s new design approach as it moves toward an all-electric future.
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A new path for Buick design
The Buick Wildcat was created to communicate a whole new design language that would affect Buick production cars in the near future. Buick’s new tri-shield emblem, which will be prominently displayed on the front and back of new production vehicles beginning next year, represents the design shift.
“The Wildcat EV concept represents the real design future for the brand,” said Sharon Gauci, executive director, Global Buick and GMC Design. “Buick has always been forward looking and this expression is a glimpse of where we’re going, and the optimism we have for the limitless possibilities of an electric future.”
The Wildcat EV concept also presents Buick’s new, expressive face, which is defined by a dramatic, forward-leaning front-end look with a low-mounted trapezoidal grille. The car is flanked by sharp, high-mounted, horizontal check mark-shaped illumination, while the main lighting is housed on the grille’s outside borders.
The lighting components are set to produce a distinctive greeting dance when the driver approaches.
The car, which is a 2+2 coupe, also has a forceful, expressive appearance, thanks to an all-new, laid-back proportion balanced by a low, broad stance. To emphasize the aggressive character, the windshield wraps around and flows into the side glass, which tapers drastically with the quick roofline.
“From every angle, the vehicle looks like it’s ready to pounce,” said Bob Boniface, director, Global Buick Design. “It’s the result of careful attention to the proportions and sculptural beauty derived from the intersection of forms, not lines.”
Design elements that stand out
Further exterior design features include semi-swing doors with a unique design for easy access and egress. The internal seat components look to blend effortlessly into the unique metal trim, as for the front illumination, micro-LED lighting technology and thin-beam projector lenses were used.
The taillights have the shape of blades integrated into the roof’s sail panels, culminating in horizontal lamps in the shape of check marks that mimic the front lighting signature. The outside hatchback glass has an external “status of charge” indication and 18-spoke “turbine” wheels inspired by the Jet Age.
“The more you look at the Wildcat EV concept, the more the details reveal themselves,” said Boniface. “Its timeless proportions acknowledge the brand’s rich design legacy, while our latest technology moves you forward.”
Comfortable and modern experience on the inside
The interior of the Wildcat EV concept has a pleasant and soothing light inside, all while using innovative technology to make the riding experience more pleasurable.
“It’s a space intended to strike an emotional chord,” said Therese Pinazzo, Buick exterior and interior design manager. “It is defined by simple, graceful forms that convey balance, harmony and a feeling of warmth.”
The 2+2 arrangement, which is defined by a prominent console that runs from the base of the instrument panel to the back seat, employs unusual graphic and color contrasts to provide the impression of visually floating parts, enhancing the cabin’s lightness and spaciousness.
Color is vital in conveying warmth and comfort in an interior. Legato Green runs throughout the interior, with brushed or polished metal accents. Orange accents, such as seat belts, help to distinguish the vehicle.
A lightweight, flat-bottom steering wheel and cockpit-style chairs with cantilevered headrests that look to float are also included in the interior design.
A sweeping touchscreen on the instrument panel, together with a complimentary screen on the console, is the entry point for technology integration and infotainment interaction.
The Wildcat EV idea is designed to serve as a platform for cutting-edge technologies like artificial intelligence, biometrics, and aromatherapy. The car is programmed to detect an increase in the driver’s pulse rate and modify vehicle settings to help them relax.
When Zen Mode is turned on, for example, the cabin lights darken, peaceful aromatherapy fragrances are diffused, and massaging chairs are engaged.
The whole idea is meant to express what’s possible in terms of design, technology, and the transforming experience of EV mobility.
“We are on the cusp of true change, and this concept is a tangible vision of it,” said Gauci. “It inaugurates the next chapter in Buick’s design heritage, as we make the crucial transition to our all-electric future.”
Buick Wildcat: a legacy of visionary concepts
The Wildcat moniker has been reserved for unique, forward-thinking Buick concept cars that push the frontiers of design and technology for almost 70 years. The original Wildcat, unveiled in 1953, was a show car that foreshadowed next-generation Buick design, much like the modern Wildcat EV concept.
The Wildcat II and III ideas followed in 1954 and 1955, respectively, with famed lead designer Harley Earl overseeing all of the designs. Another Wildcat idea emerged in 1985. It was a futuristic-looking, mid-engine, all-wheel-drive supercar created to demonstrate new engine technology.