We need a good motorcycle design competiton. It should be pretty clear by now that any company, no matter how capable their design department, simply misses a lot of great ideas because relatively few designers are on staff. Occasionally, a design competition primarily for autos will get a few motorcycle entries, like the Hyanide and Baal, but for the most part, these competitions are limited to cars.
SAE, the Society of Automotive Engineers, has several competitions going on a regular basis in areas for cars, trucks, racing, off road, snowmobiles and even airplanes but no motorcycles. Why not? I noticed the other day Ferrari and Alcoa teamed up with a competition for designing the Ferrari of the Future. These sorts of things happen all the time but I haven’t noticed similar motorcycle competitions.
New motorcycle concepts are unveiled at shows and comments are then solicited but how about asking for a new design from scratch? Every manufacturer has a strong following and I bet a lot of those folks have pretty good ideas about what they would like to see. Instead of putting a new V-max design on a display stand, why doesn’t Yamaha ask for new V-max designs altogether? Harley Davidson may think the custom builders and shows give them all of the ideas they need but if someone had to design with an eye on production, their ideas might be very cool with possibilities even HD didn’t think of. The same goes for all of the other manufacturers, the more eyes and minds you have working on design, the more options and ideas you have to work with.
We’ve had previous posts on computer based designs from guys like Tim Cameron and Mark van der Kwaak, but there are many more great idea guys out there and a design challenge might get the competitive juices flowing. There are probably huge numbers of students who would jump at a chance to show their skill if given the opportunity. Maybe there are competitions already out there I’ve missed and, if so, please let me know so I can tell more people about them but if they exist, they’re flying under my radar.
There’s never been a time when more people could take a shot at something like this and I’d love to see what the results would be.