Now this is an interesting concept… a car with no sheet metal skin. The 2-seater BMW GINA’s dodgy name actually stands for “Geometry and functions In N Adaptations”, with N adaptations referring to the flexible outer skin of the car that is made out of cloth!
Under all that cloth is a special chassis structure which includes movable sub-frames to vary the outer layer of cloth according to the functionality needed. The cloth itself is a special highly durable and extremely expansion-resistant fabric material. The material remains dimensionally stable irrespective of the temperature and air humidity.
The cloth covers the structure seamlessly, and can adapt to various driving needs. For example, during the day when headlamps are not needed they are completely hidden away behind the cloth. The closed fabric cover over opens to the right and left of the BMW kidney grille and exposes the car’s headlamps. As for indicator lamps and rear brake lamps, they simply shine through the cloth.
The shape of the rear of the car can also be changed for different aerodynamic needs. A spoiler hidden under the cloth can be raised when needed, but still remains covered by the cloth. The rear just changes shape because the cloth now covers a raised spoiler.
The overall contours of the car morphs depending on how wide the kidney grilles at the front of the car is opened. The kidney grille size can be varied according to engine bay cooling requirements. The widening mechanism at the front of the car adds tension to the cloth on the rest of the body, and the result of this are character lines that change depending on the grille opening.
Will we ever see a car like this being made? What’s known is BMW designers have really thought out of the box when they thought up this concept. I think Chris Bangle himself can explain the GINA Concept better than I ever can, so watch a video of him explaining the BMW GINA Concept after the jump.
VIDEO: BMW GINA Light Visionary Model Concept