I once had a Peugeot. No, not a car, but a street bike I bought for $80 at a garage sale. It was the best bike I’ve ever owned. A friend of mine had the exact same one, and we used to call them… wait for it… twin cobras. I have no idea why we came up with that name, or what the hell a snake and its brother had to do with an elegant French bike from the 1970s, but it made a fun bike even better.
Now I’m largely exposed to Peugeot through their numerous cars here in Europe, although for months I was confused by the Italian pronunciation, thinking these people were talking about some other, mysterious brand I couldn’t spell, and frankly I’m still not sure exactly how to say the name at all. Most likely my French Canadian education has had me pronouncing the name wrong all along, so what I thought was poo-zho is probably pyoo-zho or per-zho. Sometimes I don’t really know what the hell I’m doing.
Since phonetics prevents me from saying their name right and my driving license is no longer valid here, the only reason I’m writing about Peugeot is because their latest Design Competition caught my eye. From their site:
Create a Concept Car which is designed to evolve within the cities of the future, whilst retaining the key values of the 21st century. The projects should bear Peugeot’s stylistic codes and must contain the following four aspects included in this design competition: environmental awareness, social harmony, interactive mobility and economic efficiency.
They narrowed it down to ten finalists that you can view right here, and just recently chose their winners. In third place was China’s Lou Ke, who designed a sort of scissory-double-motorcycle thing. His wacky writeup:
I don’t think this type belonged “20?” “30?” or “90?”,so i give the name “x0x”,but the car shape is more like “oxo”,so it is. A electric power car.
The car looks like a toy,because the color is no stress just like tomorrow life,naive and freedom.
Then you must drive a car with out learning how to drive it. The “oxo” is one of this type.
Drive the car is easy than in games,with the “PEUGEOT Phone” help,the car can be controled or autorun. The “X” system inside is save the space when the car parking,and through narrow or crowded street. The car wheel allowed the car lateral movement,rotate in-situ,and so on..
With the nimble and smart friend help,you must have a perfect tomorrow.
Second place went to Emre Yazici of Turkey, with a sort of single-passenger two-wheeled car that isn’t a motorcycle and fits right with Minority Report. He says:
Peugeot EGO has been conceived as a lean vehicle in every aspect. It is easy to own, easy to maintain, and easy to operate. And, most importantly, it is easy on the environment. The majority of the vehicles at the rush-hour in a big city, carry a single passenger. EGO is designed for a single passenger [...] Steering is performed by independently changing the rotational speed of the wheels. So, u-turns at the same spot is possible. The agility of EGO has virtually no match. Say good-bye to the clumsy and unsafe steering wheel, and also to the pedals. The driver employs a joy-stick to perform the manoeuvres, and to control the speed simultaneously.
And our winner is Carlos Arturo Torres Tovar of Colombia, with his design called the RD, which is easily the best-realized out of all the entries. I’m not one that’s always too crazy about futuristic, curvaceous, speculative-looking design, but this is real nice. Unfortunately his writeup is entirely in Spanish, but it’s OK, the pics and video are more than sufficient.
You can see all the winners at Peugeot’s (that’s pronounced pee-you-gee-ott, I’ve decided) website, right here.