The BMW Gina when it was unveiled last year was a great example of outside the box thinking. Gina stands for Geometry and Functions in ‘N’ Adaptations.
The BMW Gina’s defining characteristic is its spandex like textile skin that replaces a metal outer body. The textile skin fits over an aluminum and carbon fiber wire frame. This means that when doors and trunks open and close, they flex instead of swinging on hinges.
This also means that if the skin were torn, pierced or punctured or damaged in some other way, it would take only ½ an hour to replace the entire textile skin of the BMW Gina. Conceivably this would be a bit safer for pedestrians and bicycle riders that may collide with the textile.
But, the most important feature from a green standpoint is that this reduces weight in the vehicle which equates to great gas mileage. Replacing metal with fabric is one way the car manufacturers can increase MPG’s in the future.
Will the BMW Gina ever be a production vehicle? Probably not, as there would be a whole host of crash test issues to overcome. But, it does give us a peak into the future and another idea of how to increase mileage, reduce emissions and increase energy independence.