Capturing the Pleasure that Driving can Bring Through Design
Masaya Suzuki is an interior designer on Mazda’s design team. His aim is to create an exciting car design that makes people want to drive a Mazda when they see it. By drawing countless sketches, he distills his ideas until he has achieved perfect harmony between the emotional and rational. When Suzuki’s pen flows, a space that enhances driving pleasure is created.
Always Giving Purpose to Shape
The designer’s task starts with drawing sketches of ideas based on the development concept. “As for the interior, for which I am responsible, I design everything that comes into view when the user opens the door,” Suzuki says. “There is a reason behind the shape of each and every part. Each shape reflects such things as function and philosophy.”
Beauty is an essential element at Mazda, where designs are developed devoted to the aesthetic of form. “Lighting adjustment is important for bringing out the beauty of forms. What’s always on my mind is what shape would create lovely shades of light and darkness in relation to the direction the light comes from,” Suzuki says. Although the beauty he creates is a product of meticulous design work, Suzuki wants users to just feel it.
Paying Meticulous Attention to Hidden Details
“Mazda makes cars with its focus on the driver,” Suzuki says, “When it comes to the interior design, what we try to do is to figure out what layout would make people feel the urge to drive the car when they sit in the driver’s seat. This feeling can be evoked by a layout that creates an impression of forward motion or the sense of being enveloped, something like what a pilot would feel when sitting in a cockpit.” Suzuki’s strong devotion to design extends even to details that users would not normally notice.
“For example, when designing the door handle, I pay attention to the part of the handle that can’t be seen and consider what shape will make it easy to grasp, In addition, I take care to position the lighting at the foot of the door so it can’t be seen from the outside,” Suzuki says. Users will feel closer to their cars, Suzuki believes, if they notice that every part, down to the unexpected details, has been designed with care and attention.
Driving Pleasure is What I Want to Communicate
What is it that makes Suzuki care so much about the details? “It’s because I want users to enjoy driving,” he says. “Today, it might be that more people than in the past think of driving a car merely as a means of going somewhere. But if they try a Mazda, I’m sure the pleasure of driving will be communicated to them.”
“Our goal is to create a car design that appeals to people’s emotions when they see it, when they are driving it and when they’re getting out of it,” Suzuki says. “There is no end to what the designer needs to do.” Expressing driving pleasure through design is the challenge that he tackles every day.
Mazda Design Creates New Products through the Harmony of Brilliant Technology and Ideas
If too much emphasis is placed on design, it sometimes becomes impossible to turn the idea into a realistic form. Suzuki creates superior forms by developing his ideas while listening to the opinions of the clay modeler, who turns idea sketches into 3-D objects. Suzuki says collaboration like this is the strength of Mazda’s design team. And what starts as one person’s passion, becomes energy that fuels the team as a whole, creating beauty that captures people’s hearts.