Last year, SAIC Design – the London-based styling outfit responsible for MG Motor – had presented the radical new Maze concept as a gaming-inspired compact EV which aims to “bring back driving fun to electrified cars”. MG’s Maze concept car has become the first car to win the prestigious 2022 Red Dot of Play and Games. The Red Dot Award is an international design competition for product design, communication design and design concepts.
The MAZE concept is a positive reaction to lives during recent years, where there are restrictions and limitations on ability to move around and interact freely. Exploring the idea of next generation ‘mobile gaming’, MAZE is a platform for people to get out and rediscover their environment which opens up new experiences with their once familiar environment. MAZE’s transparent body helps the passengers to feel more appreciative of their surroundings, offering a new open perspective on the world around them.
Forecasting the continued development of auto-pilot technology, the seats are more multi-purpose than simply holding the driver in a single driving position. The adaptable design of the seats offers various modes, from gaming to zero gravity, in order to enhance the experience both physically and mentally.
MAZE uses Augmented Reality technology to bring a completely new user experience. The design of the interface appears as a three-dimensional layout floating throughout the panorama of the passengers view. Menus and maps are overlaid onto the physical landscape, where digital artwork appears over the architecture and landmarks of the city.
A truly outdoor life is more difficult for a generation that is growing during the pandemic. Familiarity and comfort through digital interfaces encourages a less physically adventurous spirit, understanding the importance of the great outdoors and the discovery of new experiences. Through MAZE they aim to link the physical and digital worlds in a more engaging and seamless way to encourage the younger generation to find their own links to the city, its history and its future.
These virtual creative artworks are embedded around the city, hidden from view of most people. When the users of MAZE discover the correct landmark from clues provided, the artwork is unlocked as a reward for accepting their mission. The number and variation of digital ‘easter-eggs’ is limitless and can be renewed continuously to maintain interest and engagement in the game.
The playful scenario of MAZE connects to a desire of challenge, discovery and achievement, which is delivered via a points-based reward system. The concept is conceived around the user experience, rewarding users for their time spent with the vehicle and the MG brand. The personalities and status of the ‘players’ are displayed on the side and front corners of the car in order to elevate their peer-to-peer credentials and to add a friendly competition to the process.
A virtual map is projected onto the ground immediately in front of the car, and viewable through the large open panel at the front of the exterior. Fundamental to the core exploration experience, the map marks out landmarks in apparent 3D and indicates routes in a strikingly visual way.
Mobility isn’t just about the mundane A to B, and should not be a stressful or unpleasant experience. With congested transport the idea of driving for fun is slowly disappearing, and the new generation of users want a fresh, engaging and relevant experience. MAZE is created to provide a journey that is both entertaining, inspirational, creative and adventurous.