BMW’s Designworks subsidiary teamed up with outdoor apparel manufacturer The North Face to develop a lightweight camper concept and virtual reality (VR) experience unveiled at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2019 in Las Vegas on Tuesday.
Partially inspired by BMW’s 2008 GINA Light Visionary Model concept car, the Futurelight camper utilizes what various industrial, tech, and apparel companies have dubbed "nanospinning" technology. The production method provides tight-knit durability while creating nano-sized holes, which essentially allows for air permeability while retaining structural integrity and a thorough, outer shell. BMW hails the process as “revolutionary,” as it let The North Face designers construct a rigid and waterproof material equally capable of substantial porosity and ventilation for the first time.
Regarding the VR experience showcased at CES, visitors were able to virtually explore the camper up close, in a snowy, mountainous terrain aimed to simulate one of the many intended uses for the Futurelight.
For Laura Robin, studio director of Designworks in Los Angeles, taking this immersive digital approach to present The North Face’s latest collaboration was a no brainer.
“We combined both physical and digital worlds to showcase this material, ensuring the holistic vision of the brand was clearly communicated, while giving people a real ‘hands-on’ experience,” she said. “Thinking about extreme performance in new and unexpected ways from our experience of working across multiple industries, helped us to provide consumers with a unique and never before seen insight into the very heart of the material and its key attributes.”
The Futurelight’s design appeal largely lies in its impressive fusion of waterproof yet breathable, lightweight yet trustworthy construction. Unlike Ford’s recent Quiet Kennel concept intended to protect dogs from noise pollution-induced panic, The North Face actually intends to sell the Futurelight as part of its Fall 2019 product line later this year. In the meantime, here's some helpful camping advice to tide you over.
For those interested in garnering a closer look at this technological innovation in fabric, the Futurelight is on display at CES 2019 this week.