VDA Design Awards 2008: the winners

VDA Design Awards 2008: the winners

The winning entries of the 2008 VDA Design Awards, the competition open to design students with the theme "Transport Efficiency 2020". The projects focused on futuristic solutions aimed at efficiency and urban environments.

The VDA Design Award 2008 – Transport Efficiency 2020 was organized by the German Association of the Automotive Industry in cooperation with the German Design Council,

Windcatcher Concept The Windcatcher Concept, grand winner of the contest

The challenge was taken up by 35 students of transportation design at universities in India, Japan, Serbia, the UK, Austria and Germany.

“The entries convinced the jury because of their high quality”, said Andrej Kupetz , Managing Director of the German Design Council.

“In times of shortage re s resources efficient solutions by design are in great demand.”

The jury consists of members of the VDA, the German Design Council and members of the supporting companies from the commercial vehicles industry awarded seven entries.

The award ceremony took place on the occasion of the IAA Commercial Vehicles fair in Hannover on September 26th 2008.

The winners

Windcatcher ConceptThe Windcatcher

  • by Abhinandan Saini, College for Creative Studies, Detroit, USA
  • 1st Prize 2.000 Euro and internship at OPEL

The Windcatcher aims at minimizing the need for heavy trucks in cities.

The truck is designed for long distances only, using a morphable shell, embedded with piezoelectric actuators helping it to provide considerable lift at high speeds, and thus to enabling to ‘fly’, protecting the environment and reducing fuel consumption.

Smaller utility vehicles transfer the load from the Windcatcher while it is on the move. This refers to keep heavy trucks out of the city.

R9 Turbosteamer

  • R9 Turbosteamerby Nathan Lee, Coventry University Art and Design, Coventry, United Kingdom
  • 2nd Prize 1.000 Euro and internship at KRONE

This truck concept has a 6-stroke diesel-steam hybrid propulsion system, kinetic energy recovery system, air drive system and trailer emergency braking system

The driver cabin includes a toilet with shower, a sleeping platform and a kitchen.

The streamlined dynamic exterior feauteres a camera monitor system.

R9 Turbosteamer R9 Turbosteamer


  • Dualityby Jacob Müller, André Kieschnik – Hochschule für Wirtschaft und Technik Dresden, Germany
  • 3rd Prize (500 Euro) and internship at MAN

The „duality“- principle combines street and rail.

The truck switches from street to rail-driving-modules and can move by its own engine power.

The modules enable the vehicle to go throughout Europe on different track gauges.

Additionally the air-conditioned container system has been developed as a protection and a new packaging system for the load.

Duality Duality


  • by Ramandeep Singh, MIT Institute of Design, Pune, India
  • Internship at DAIMLER
Felidae Felidae Felidae

This special truck is designed for transporting flat glass. An extendable truck that transports the same amount of load as a tractor semi-trailer unit. For loading and unloading the truck can be lowered and effects reducing time, effort and breakage. A suspension set up identifies the road pavement and the trailer’s suspension will be adapted accordingly.


  • by Benjamin Cselley, Jupin Ghanbari, Jessica Covi, Erol Kursani – Universität für Angewandte Kunst Wien, Austria
  • Internship at VOLKSWAGEN
Chiron Chiron Chiron

A transport system that combines the road vehicle’s flexibility whith the environmental compatibility of the railway. The engine used is an algae-powered fuel cell. Satellite tracking pairs are the ideal navigation with supplementary dimension railroad.

King Kong

  • by Xin Liu, Hochschule der Bildenden Künste Saar, Saarbrücken, Germany
  • Internship at MEILLER
King Kong King Kong King Kong

The essential of this truck is its transformation at any time from a closed box truck into a container carrier. The vehicle can either transport small goods up to 20 feet or freight in a container up to 40 feet. This metamorphosis requires no tools or special equipment. The turning circle of King Kong is much smaller than that of a conventional truck and therefore this truck can be used like a light shuttle even for narrow streets.

Cargo Cube

  • by Helge Oder, Mirko Gabschuß – HTW Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft Dresden, Germany
  • Internship at SCHMITZ CARGOBULL
Cargo Cube Cargo Cube Cargo Cube

The truck transports a multitude of containers externally mounted onto a central frame. An integrated transport system allows unloading the containers from every side.

The vehicle does not need to be unloaded completely before a new container can be added. The flexible concept allows differents sorts of containers. Equipped with RFID Chips the container modules can “find”? their transport vehicle individually.

(Source: VDA Design Awards)

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