Today’s cars all look pretty much the same, and even many self-driving car concepts tend to look drearily similar. So why not ask future drivers–very young ones–to envision how their vehicles will look when they can finally get their licenses? Turns out, there’s chocolate involved. Chocolate fuel, that is.
A comparison shopping website that offers car insurance rates recently asked a group of 10 kids to draw what they think cars should look like decades from now–and the results were both wildly imaginative and technologically creative. The drawings, which you can see here accompanied by professional illustrations of each child’s concept, point to a new generation’s attitudes toward driving. According to these kids, self-driving cars are old news. They’re dreaming bigger and greener.
Many of the kids noted alternative sources of fuel for their vehicles, revealing an awareness that new means of power will be a crucial part of the future. One car, created by 11-year-old Paula, uses opposing magnets to hover over magnetic roads. Six-year-old Isla’s “Candy Robo Car” runs on chocolate and has a “cupcake booster” feature–which presumably shoots out cupcakes instead of pollution to give the vehicle an extra jolt of speed. Another, from 11-year-old Kyre, uses a more traditional means of energy. It has an electric generator on board to propel itself forward, though Kyre imagines that the wheels could also turn on their sides and transform into propellers to allow the car to fly.
The ideas also point to an awareness of new materials and how they might change the way cars look and operate in the world. 11-year-old Boban’s car is made of extra strong metal, with rubber wheels that somehow enable it to drive on water. 11-year-old Danielle’s “Unicar” is made from a color-changing metal. Joel, age 11, notes how his underwater car has windows made from flexible glass that won’t shatter under pressure when the car is submerged.
There aren’t any professed self-driving cars–though some have robotic assistants, and one can even transform from a car into a bipedal robot. Instead, most of the ideas envision vehicles that can switch effortlessly between driving on the ground to hovering to even flying or cruising through the ocean. One idea in particular illustrates a belief that one day cars may not just be cars–Charlotte, age 12, drew a boxy, rainbow-colored vehicle that doubles as a house and can sprout wings to zoom over traffic.
For these kids, it’s not self-driving cars that symbolize the future. It’s alternative energy, new materials, and flight. And after all, who wouldn’t want to drive around in a car shaped like a dragon that can shoot into the sky with a tilt of its wings?