I recently visited the British Motor Museum, formerly known as the Heritage Motor Centre at Gaydon, Warwickshire to view a thought provoking, new exhibition which explores the future of the motor car called “The Car. The Future. Me.” showing until July 2020.
Do you remember your first motor car? My first car was a well – worn yellow old Ford Thames Van. Despite its age and tendency to break down on many occasions I loved that car and it served me well for several years. Today, I drive a petrol fuelled 3 litre BMW Z4 and I love to drive it! Like many, I am in love with driving and my car.
The way I drive, the way I handle a car, is an expression of my inner feelings.
Over the past 100 years, the motor car has made a big difference to social mobility around the world but we now live in a society which has a much greater concern and awareness for the environment. It is now accepted that our motor cars make a significant contribution to climate change because of their harmful emissions so what does the future hold for personal and social transport systems?
Today our streets are more congested than ever before but with rapidly changing developments in new technology, means the car as we know it, is changing very quickly.
The exhibition begins by looking back at the inventors of the first cars, electric motor vehicles are nothing new! Visitors can discover what designers in the 20th century thought the cars of today would look like and whether their predictions have come true!
I’ve always been into cars. Cars are part of our genetic makeup. It’s unavoidable.
The exhibition explores the latest car technology, looking at how electric cars work and poses questions about the way forward, is electric the best solution for today’s roads and travel. Or is there another alternative? Visitors discover the world of autonomous vehicles, how much technology is in our cars today and how connected, shared transport systems might be closer to reality than we think. Trials of autonomous vehicles have already taken place across the country, including Milton Keynes.
Included in the exhibition are visions of the future from times past, such as the Triumph XL90 conceived in 1967 as the car of the year 2000, right up to the latest Aurrigo PodZero autonomous pod, which is built in Coventry and is playing a crucial role in the first international trials of driverless vehicles for communities with reduced mobility.
Finally, the exhibition looks ahead to what the future could hold, bringing together visions of designers, engineers and the general public. Visitors get a chance to use their imagination and design what they see as the car of the future.
Stephen Laing, Curator at the British Motor Museum said “We are delighted to be hosting this thought-provoking exhibition which we hope will spark debate amongst our visitors. Will there still be cars in 100 years’ time? How we will drive them? Will we drive at all? As visitors’ journey through the exhibition they will be asked a series of questions about how they think the car might change in the future and how it may affect them. For example, do they like the idea of being a passenger in a fully automatic pod and would they miss driving? Finally, they will be asked to decide how they feel about the future, as it has many unknowns!”
Visitors are left to answer three questions after viewing the exhibition. It is an exhibition which certainly got me thinking about my car and the way in which I use it. Motoring and driving for me is a pleasurable experience which I may find difficult to give up. What kind of world will the classic car enthusiasts be living in around twenty years’ time?
The exhibition poses many questions and tries to provide visitors with some answers. It is an intriguing and thought provoking exhibition which will leave everyone who visits thinking very hard about the future of the motor car and the future of public and personal modes of transport.
I’m a crazy car guy. I’ve got an airplane hangar full of cars.
The exhibition is included within the Museum entrance fee. Museum entry is £14.50 for adults, £12.50 for concessions, £9 for children (5-16 years) and under 5s are FREE. There is also the option to Gift Aid or donate your entry fee and get an Annual Pass in return, at no extra cost.