Furth, Germany – An in-mould decoration with a polyurethane backing has won the Leonhard Kurtz Foundation Award at the German Design Council's Future Mobility and Parts competition.
Polyurethane panel wins automotive award
The winning entry, Iconic Space Grill, has a closed surface without a radiator grill. Instead, the design features overlapping optical structures. A basic design with areas in different shades of grey has light refracting prisms and light guides, so the smooth surface of the panel gives the impression of an automotive grill. Unlike grills, the design is smooth and aerodynamic.
Additionally, parts of the sheet are backlit with indicators to show that the vehicle is braking, flashing or charging with electricity. Alternatively, the panel can act as a light show for music played in the vehicle.
The optical structures are put in place with in-mould decoration, and this is flooded with polyurethane. The material helps to provide additional depth to the design and looks like glass. Additionally, the PU is self-healing and durable.
The German Design Council set up the international competition to celebrate the 'fundamental importance of brand and brand design tin the automotive industry'.