Singapore isn’t renowned for its automotive industry, let alone its electric powered hypercars. WFRIC World, a Singapore-based company, is looking to change that by creating Dendodrium, the first Singaporean concept car.
Dendodrium is said to embody a ‘stylistic Asian spirit’ and exemplify values of technological innovation and competition. The new electric hypercar was revealed at the international design fair in Shenzhen, China, earlier this year, featuring an exterior design by Luigi Memola, design director of EPTA Design, a London-based design consultancy.
Inspired by Japanese robots, the sinuous shapes of flower petals and a woman’s body, the Dendrobium illustrates the WFRIC’s desire to be seen as protagonists, shattering preconceived notions that Asian manufacturers are copycats. EPTA took the company’s input into account and set out to convert these values into the form of an “extreme car capable of capturing the viewer’s attention and generate curiosity,” Memola says of the brief.
The car gets its name from a huge genus of orchids, but it could also be named after a “hypothetical new material technology derived from magnesium, titanium or aluminum,” says Memola, a designer who has worked with Pininfarina, Bertone and Up Design. He has also created a series of land, sea and flight vehicles since the inception of EPTA two years ago.
EPTA proposed two design directions for the Dendrobium in Spring 2015. The first, ‘Advanced’, sought to create an elegant, sporty car akin to a Ferrari or a Maserati GT Berlinetta, while the second, ‘Extreme’, yielded a pure show car with a strong design language that commanded attention. The project was developed almost entirely in digital with the exception of all the handmade sketches, a requirement to meet the “rather tight” deadline Memola says.
Following the design through in Singapore, Memola also proposed three different models based on this theme: Alpha, Beta and Gamma. In the end the client chose to develop the Alpha model, which measures in at 5500mm long, 2100mm wide and 1200mm tall, with a 3500mm wheelbase. “The dimensions are derived from the fact that we wanted to assume [initially] the presence of a hybrid drive with an internal combustion engine and a battery pack contained inside the wheels,” Memola says.
Two spoilers, which rise from the front spoiler lip and double as the headlamps, characterize the car’s front face. The straight horizontal line in the hexagon shaped grille matches the shape of the windshield-mounted cameras, while vertical slots in the front fenders act as air inlets. In profile the large channel allows air to “lift” the cabin element and direct air to the rear wheels, cooling exposed electric motors that communicate its technical aesthetic. But it is in plan view that the drop shape was modeled – there is only one sensual curve that culminates in the vertical exhaust.
At the moment the car is only a static model devoid of an interior, but plans to produce and sell the Dendrobium are currently being examined.