Ford teams up with gamers to produce ‘ultimate virtual racing car’
COLOGNE, GERMANY - Sim racing has exploded this year thanks to all the lockdown restrictions around the globe, and Ford has been instrumental in supporting this virtual realm, both locally and abroad.
As we recently reported, Ford staged South Africa’s first virtual racing championship in June and July on the Gran Turismo platform.
Now there’s some exciting news on the international front, with Ford and its Team Fordzilla esports team having revealed a world first at this year’s gamescom event. Described as the “ultimate virtual racing car” the Team Fordzilla P1 concept was designed in collaboration between Ford’s own designers and the gaming community.
The sim vehicle was created with fan votes on Twitter at different design stages, where gamers got to decide on aspects like seating position, cockpit style and drivetrain, before Ford designers worked up their interpretations of the brief.
Inspired by the Ford GT, the Team Fordzilla P1 concept has some unique touches, like the ability to morph technology on the body to provide the stability of a longtail race car on the high speed straights of Le Mans, or a shorter body for tighter circuits like Monaco.
But when will gamers get to take a spin?
Ford says it is in “advanced discussions” with a major games developer to introduce it to a popular racing game in 2021.
But the concept won’t be completely relegated to the virtual world as Ford says it plans to build a life-size scale model of it before the end of this year as part of its continuing theme of exploring the parallels between the real-world and the virtual one, with learnings from design in the digital world being applied to concepts for reality.
Watch the reveal:
“Project P1 took me to the beginning of it all. The reason why I became a car designer in the first place was to design something never seen before and something that pushes the boundaries,” said the P1’s designer Arturo Ariño.
“This vehicle will be visually stunning, and while it will push the gamer to the limits of focus and reflexes, it will also be hugely rewarding to drive.”
Team Fordzilla spokesperson Emmanuel Lubrani said the company was encouraged by the continued support it received from the gaming community.
“This really pushes us to keep innovating with projects like the Team Fordzilla P1 concept,” he added.