For the past nine years, FCA and now Stellantis have been running something called the Drive for Design contest. The program is targeted at high school students interested in pursuing automotive design, and tasks them with mocking up a futuristic vehicle of their own. This year’s contest was centered around Jeep, and more specifically a future where the brand embraces fully electric vehicles. The Stellantis Drive for Design contents has officially wrapped up at this point, and now the automaker shared their top three submissions. Michigan-based Twelfth grader Vincent Piaskowski was crowned the overall champion, alongside his Jeep Grand Teton SUV concept.
Jeep Grand Teton
For those who have kept up with the Stellantis Drive for Design contest over the years, Piaskowski should be a familiar name. The high schooler has managed to take home a second and third place finish in the past, with his Jeep Grand Teton concept now rounding out his podium efforts. The SUV bears the most resemblance to the designs we see employed by the automaker today, while also pushing the boundaries of what we’ve come to expect. The Jeep Grand Teton keeps the classic upright front fascia with the seven-barred grille, while continuing the boxy nature of Jeeps from yore throughout the profile. The glass is interesting as well, but the rear end is where things are really different. Overall, this is the sketch that looks the most like something we could see wearing a Jeep badge in the future.
Jeep Crazy Horse
The second place design was submitted by Rocco Morales, a 10th grader also from the Great Lakes States. Morales’ design is called the Jeep Crazy Horse, and it is certainly something new for the brand. More of a buggy than a typical SUV, this electric vehicle features a sliding battery pack that moves to improve traction on the trails, as well as some genuinely massive tires. The greenhouse features some McLaren Senna-esque lower glass, which provides an awesome open-air look. Speaking of open air, the Crazy Horse also packs a drop-down windshield, like a Jeep off-roader should.
Third place was awarded to 12th grader Alex Wang from California. Their design is called the Adversary, and features a slick cab-forward design. This truck is clearly laid out for overlanding adventures, and comes with unique touches like integrated tent storage and potable water tanks for use when camping. The roof also features integrated solar cells to help keep the batteries topped up on the move. We love how well it relates to cab-over models from the past, while keeping things thoroughly futuristic.
The grand prize of the Stellantis Drive for Design program includes a Wacom MobileStudio Pro 16, as well as a one-on-one portfolio review with Design Chief Ralph Gilles and Head of Ram Trucks and Mopar Design Mark Trostle. Second and third place winners receive an Apple iPad Pro and Apple Pencil, as well as some one-on-one time with Trostle. All three award winners will also receive a scholarship to the College For Creative Studies‘ month-long summer program, as well as a virtual demo with the Stellantis design team. Exciting stuff for anyone trying to get into this challenging field.
Congratulations to all three of the finalists in the Stellantis Drive for Design program. Being that young and talented is quite impressive, and something to be proud of. We’re certain that as time moves on, we’ll see these names attached to some seriously slick projects. We’d certainly be interested in seeing some of these Jeep electric vehicle designs in the flesh, albeit a few years down the road.