This Top Designer Says Sports Cars Will Survive Autonomous Cars

Interview

When the guy who designed the Ferrari Enzo and Kode57 speaks we listen.

No one knows where the automobile will be in the next few decades. According to ex-automotive executive Bob Lutz, cars will be gone in 20 years, replaced by transport pods. But what about the car lovers of the world? Gearheads don't want to let go of these beautiful creations. Multiply that feeling by a 1,000 for the people who designed them. Ken Okuyama, the man responsible for the Ferrari Enzo, recently sat down for a chat with Autoblog to talk about the future of cars as he sees it.

Speaking on autonomous cars, Okuyama said he was excited about them from a design standpoint. To him, cars are private spaces, but a network of shared autonomous vehicles would constitute public transportation. This poses a new test for designers who now have to balance designing around multiple users as well as around new and alternative powertrains. What’s more is that he thinks that when the commuter cars of the world are phased out it will be the supercars that remain. Quoting Dr. Ferdinand Porsche, Okuyama said, “Dr. Porsche [was asked what type of] automobile is going to last for the longest time. He said, ‘the sports car.’ I really believe in that, because with sports cars, you never lose a sense of ownership.”

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This is an outline of the future that we can agree with and hope for because after all, if cars really do end up going the route of horses, as Okuyama said they might, then we would no longer use them for transportation but for fun. That would allow car companies more freedom to design cars with the enthusiast at the forefront. After all, many of us have bonded with our cars but nobody really cares about the Uber they jump into so long as it gets them where they're going. Maybe that’s why Okuyama has decided to bring his own wild fantasies into the world in the form of the Kode57. While the crystal ball's outlook may look grim for our everyday commuter favorites, we think Ferrari, Lamborghini, and the like will stay afloat into the future.

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