The whole world is now talking about the Apple Car, bringing a number of investigative resources to the subject. On Friday, The Wall Street Journal pointed out that Apple designer Marc Newson already designed a concept car, and on Monday, Time Magazine dug up a rendering of that vehicle.
Behold the Ford 021C:
021C Concept Car Designed for Ford in 1999
As we noted on Friday, Marc Newson joined Apple in 2014. Famous in the design world for everything from furniture to time pieces (watches) to cameras to work in the aerospace industry, Mr. Newson is most well known to the Apple world as Sir Jony Ive's buddy and the co-creator of several products the two made for a Project (RED) charity auction.
Mr. Newson is also a lover of cars, and he designed at least one car, the Ford 021c. According to Time, the 021c was named after Pantone's 021c, the color used in the concept renderings. This car was first shown off in 1999 at the Tokyo Motor Show. It was a concept only, and was never intended for production.
From the Time piece:
Inside, the vehicle featured seats that swivelled on pedestals and extensive LED lighting (then a novelty). The London Design Museum put the vehicle bask on display a few years ago, dubbing it “a neat illustration of Marc Newson’s approach to design: don’t just tinker with existing typologies, but take a long lateral look at them and imagine how the perfect version would be.”
Now Time had the poor taste to title its article, "This Is What Apple’s ‘Titan’ Car Could Look Like," but that's frankly absurd and disingenuous. That's what Apple's Titan car could look like if this was 1999, Apple was actually Ford, and Mr. Newson wasn't collaborating with Jony Ive and the rest of Apple's design team. Oh, and if we lived in a cartoon world.
But, it does give you an idea of where Mr. Newson is coming from stylistically. Peruse some of his many furniture designs, and you will see lines not unlike the look and feel of the Ford 021c. For instance, here are some chairs Mr. Newson designed:
Marc Newson Chairs