May 5, 2012 4:47 PM
What’s in a name? For automakers, the more relevant question
might be what isn’t! A nameplate, after all, is the critical
‘first contact’ customers experience with a new model -
even before it hits showrooms.
Often that name comes steeped in a rich history that immediately
evokes a positive emotional connection. Think, for example, Viper
or Challenger or the Chrysler 300 Ruyi design concept unveiled in
Beijing last month.
Okay, that last one may not be a nameplate immediately recognizable
here in North America, but throughout Chinese culture, the ancient
Chinese Ruyi symbol of a ceremonial scepter is widely associated
with feelings of pleasure, happiness and wishes fulfilled.
When the Chrysler brand announced earlier that it was returning to
the Chinese market after an absence of three years, the Chrysler
design team began envisioning how to bring the iconic
symbol’s emotional character to life in the 300 Ruyi design
Color and Materials designer Yi-hui Wen interpreted the Ruyi symbol
throughout the interior elements of the Chrysler 300 Ruyi design
In the interview below, she talks about how the team put their
creative heads and, in some cases, their heritage into high gear to
prove to an emerging set of ‘driven’ customers that the
Chrysler brand “gets it.”