Why Automakers Spend Millions On Concept Cars They Don’t Plan On Making
Concepts cars are made for a variety of reasons. They can cost automakers millions of dollars to make. Sometimes they’re made to gauge consumers interest in a new model and other times they’re simply a testing ground for innovative technology that’s not ready for a mass production vehicle.
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A concept car (also known for as concept vehicle, show vehicle or prototype) is a car made to showcase new styling and/or new technology. They are often shown at motor shows to gauge customer reaction to new and radical designs which may or may not be mass-produced. General Motors designer Harley Earl is generally credited with inventing the concept car, and did much to popularize it through its traveling Motorama shows of the 1950s.
Concept cars never go into production directly. In modern times all would have to undergo many changes before the design is finalized for the sake of practicality, safety, regulatory compliance, and cost. A “production-intent” prototype, as opposed to a concept vehicle, serves this purpose.