Ralph Gilles, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ global design chief, will lead a nine-member panel of judges who will select finalists in the design competition for Project Arrow.
“Project Arrow serves as a call to action to Canadian automotive parts manufacturers to design and develop the next generation of transportation for their country,” Gilles said in a statement Thursday. “I am honoured to be part of their judging panel and will be reviewing from both a creative and analytical thought process.”
Montreal-raised Gilles is based at FCA’s headquarters in Auburn Hills, Mich.
Spearheaded by the Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association, Project Arrow is the APMA’s response to Ottawa’s goal for a net-zero emission economy by 2050. Envisioned as an all-Canadian, zero-emissions, lightweight, concept vehicle to debut in 2022, Project Arrow was unveiled at CES2020 in Las Vegas and designed to showcase Canada’s auto technology cluster.
The project began with a design contest, inviting Canadian universities and colleges to submit ideas for the car, which is expected to cost between $1.5 million and $2 million to build. Suppliers will bid on the project in the fall and a “virtual concept” will be unveiled next year. A final, fully built vehicle will be introduced in 2022.
Though not intended for general consumers, the car will meet all Canadian road safety requirements.
The group of judges will select three finalists from nine submissions to the design competition, which closed May 8.
The panel also includes, Volpe, Sarah Houde, CEO, Propulsion Quebec,
Ray Tanguay, former president of Toyota Canada and federal-provincial auto adviser, Danny Stillion, partner and executive design director at California-based IDEO, Grace Quan, CEO, Vancouver-based Hydrogen in Motion Inc., Michael Hainsworth. TV, radio, Internet presenter, Thomas Heermann, of Automotive and Conceptual Design, Autodesk and Colin Singh Dhillon, APMA’s chief technical officer.
“The design submissions we received are innovative and thoughtful and the creativity of the next generation of Canadian designers is truly transformative,” said Dhillon.
The APMA expects to announce the three finalists on May 29.