Effects of Design Features on Automobile Styling Perceptions
Design features such as the shape of headlights play an important role in defining the characteristic of an automobile.
In this paper, we developed a method for investigating the effects of design features on the perception of automobile designs, by combining a new computer tool for fast and realistic visualization of different feature compositions in designs, and the conjoint analysis method from marketing research for analyzing the individual effects.
Four automobile design features – front grill, headlights, overall profile, and side vents – were selected for investigation. The results show that headlights and side vents have higher impacts in defining the characteristic of an automobile, than the other two design features.
It is hoped that the proposed visualization tool combined with conjoint analysis method offer a way for designers to systematically investigate how to manipulate product shapes and features to achieve specific perceptual qualities.