Besides the concept cars and models on show, Infiniti also laid out a few Playstation game consoles so visitors could pilot the brand’s Gran Turismo 6 concept up Lord March’s famous driveway. Developed in collaboration with the Beijing design studio, the virtual concept car was also a means of generating ideas for the design team, Cox said.
“It’s not flights of fancy, we’re looking at how can we use elements in the future as details on production products. It’s an indication of where we are evolving our form language: Instantly recognizable in a game and on the road.”
Finally, an art installation at the center of the display stand provided a glimpse of the new Q30. Set within a 4.8m2 box, the ‘active compact car’ was selectively lit up by a series of LED lights highlighting the shoulder line and characteristic Infiniti design cues such as the double-arch grille, crescent cut C-pillar and the ‘focused eye-shaped’ headlights.
The Infiniti brand designers and managers have a strong sense of where they want to be in the market, and their imminent product range looks to be a very appealing lineup. But I’ve always been particularly interested in Infiniti’s affiliation with Red Bull Racing.
While Infiniti’s tie-up with Red Bull Racing has undoubtedly been inspiring the future product range, this is not directly seen in consumer offerings and the promising ‘Eau Rouge’ endeavor has been on ice since former CEO Johan de Nysschen left to become President of Cadillac. The only presence on the show stand was the somewhat disconnected Infiniti Red Bull Racing F1 car.
Bayliss — who has held marketing roles at Porsche, Ferrari, and Bugatti before joining Infiniti — assured me that this partnership would become more visible in the near future, and cited the Infiniti brand’s use of hybrid technology as a means of generating more performance.
But perhaps the clearest vision of the partnership from a design perspective is a line from global Infiniti design boss Alfonso Albaisa, which was echoed by Infiniti’s exterior design chief Mat Weaver: “Red Bull is fuel for the body,” he said, “In the studio, we say it’s fuel for the mind.”