Auto Shows of Futures Past

The North American International Auto Show. A sensory overload of dazzling displays and tantalizing technology. From the not-so-standard subcompact cars to the automobiles beyond luxury and everything in between, the Auto Show is a decadent buffet with something for everyone who attends. My favorite displays (and presumably tens of thousands of other people’s favorite displays) are always the concept cars. The cars of the future. As I stand in front of a car that looks like a sci-fi protagonist’s getaway vehicle, I can’t help but feel a sense of timelessness. How accurate is this future-glimpsing picture? Is this what all cars will look like in forty years? Twenty? Forty years ago, did the Auto Show’s concept cars look like the ones we drive today? Were they more whimsical and less realistic than the cars that have actually come into being, imaginative indulgences rather than pragmatic predictions?

The cars of today came from someone’s imagination. Maybe they weren’t the most awe-inspiring displays at the Auto Show, but they too had to have started as concepts. And perhaps they did seem a little too fanciful in their early forms. But somehow they went from singular models never intended for purchase to mass-produced and mass-consumed products. When a car makes the leap from the lab to the road there are thousands of steps in between, most of them in factories. As an employee of a company that specializes in within these factories, the thought is humbling. We could be a part of that leap, that transition that takes this sci-fi car in front of me and turns it into a product for the masses. There are so many components of this (and every) car that require NVH testing: the brakes, the powertrain, the steering column, the seat adjuster, the axles, the muffler, the list goes on. And knowing that Signal.X provides the technology and software to make such testing possible, which in turn makes the transition from show to street possible, well it’s exciting to say the least.