Ford Media Center

No More Pencil and Paper? 360° Sketches Put Designers in The Driver’s Seat From The Very First Drawing

COLOGNE, Germany, Nov. 11, 2019 – Ford Motor Company is now using a tool that enables designers to imagine and share drawings that can immediately be experienced from the driver’s point of view, or from anywhere inside the car, in 3D or in virtual reality.

Traditionally, designers have produced 2D sketches that are then recreated as 3D computer‑aided design (CAD) models. Creating sketches that immediately enable designers to experience their work from the point of view of the driver or passengers underlines Ford’s commitment to Human-Centric Design.

“360° sketching makes it possible to see the dashboard, doors, seats and console all together and to better understand how elements interact,” said Nicolas Fourny, interior designer, Ford of Europe. “We can see how things flow, collaborate in real time and work on different elements all at once. We can make the customer experience central to a vehicle’s interior right from the start of the design.”

Developed at the Ford Design Centre in Cologne, Germany, 360° sketching is already integrated into the design process of new vehicles. Fourny and his team are also using animation to bring the sketches to life – by lighting up the dashboard cluster and screen, moving elements around, and adding more mood and atmosphere to each sketch.

Rendering the interior in such a way makes it far easier to identify improvements to the height and width of seats, check the visibility for rear passengers, change the size and placement of roof console elements, and experiment with colours, materials and shapes. All this happens with a level of artistry offering more advantages than computer-aided design.

Fourny’s inspiration for the sketching tool came from video game development, which often involves creating a world and having the player move through and interact with that world, also in virtual reality. The 360° sketch provides a template for potential driver experiences, as it creates an interaction between the viewer and the interior well before the CAD phase.

This year, Ford became the first automaker to work with Gravity Sketch – a 3D virtual reality tool that enables designers to come up with more human-centric designs.

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About Ford Motor Company

Ford Motor Company is a global company based in Dearborn, Michigan. The company designs, manufactures, markets and services a full line of Ford cars, trucks, SUVs, electrified vehicles and Lincoln luxury vehicles, provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company and is pursuing leadership positions in electrification, autonomous vehicles and mobility solutions. Ford employs approximately 191,000 people worldwide. For more information regarding Ford, its products and Ford Motor Credit Company, please visit


Ford of Europe is responsible for producing, selling and servicing Ford brand vehicles in 50 individual markets and employs approximately 47,000 employees at its wholly owned facilities and consolidated joint ventures and approximately 62,000 people when unconsolidated businesses are included. In addition to Ford Motor Credit Company, Ford Europe operations include Ford Customer Service Division and 19 manufacturing facilities (12 wholly owned facilities and seven unconsolidated joint venture facilities). The first Ford cars were shipped to Europe in 1903 – the same year Ford Motor Company was founded. European production started in 1911.

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