SPAREVROOM: Multi-Use Family Vehicle / Living Space

SPAREVROOM project is based around a multi-use family vehicle/living space. The challenge was to design an interior and service, split between three short journeys, that encourages a good balance for all facets of family life. The system and interior must work together to address the various needs of each family member. The three short journeys can be consecutive or split throughout the day. It will be an extension of the family home, where the vehicle provides a detachable mobile space with an adjustable interior to suit the needs and schedules of all the family. The interior can be customised to serve the needs of home, work and social life. The three keywords for SPAREVROOM are versatile, tailored and architectural. The question was how can you create a multi-use service and interior system that addresses all facets of family life?

There are two key services designed for SPAREVROOM: a subscription model and a sharing community. The subscription model enables family members to easily change, add or cancel their vehicles based on their current needs. These needs could and would change over time (for example, the child going to a different school or the parents getting new jobs). The sharing community is so that neighbours can use the platform to share different vehicle models between close friends, or to borrow and loan between users with payments involved (Figure 43).

Fig 43. Key services for SPAREVROOM provider and users

The main design challenge was to find a way for three seperate users, each with their own requirements, to use this vehicle at the same time. The three zones determined to have the most impact for this particular family were: Focus, Meeting and Relax. The conclusion we arrived at was for the vehicle to be able to split up and rejoin at relevant times. This is achieved by a wall that can roll up into the ceiling of the vehicle, allowing users to walk through the entirety of the interior when two or more sections are joined together (Figure 44).

Fig 44. How SPAREVROOM vehicle docks with the home

The final renderings show three sections for each family member (Figure 45- 46) and how each area can be used by all family members when the three sections are joined together. 

Fig 45. Final render showing the various interactions in a SPAREVROOM vehicle

Fig 46. Final render showing the family together in a SPAREVROOM vehicle

Lastly for SPAREVROOM, we designed the interior to be modular, able to change to suit the families needs. In the UI video, you can see the interfaces for how the family would organise their profiles and schedules, and how the various spaces interact with each other when selected.

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Research Team and Acknowledgement

The MORPH core research team includes Dr. Jiayu Wu, Dr. Sheila Clark, Ashley Kennard, Daniel Quinlan, Katrine Hesseldahl and Sam Johnson. The service designers are Hyojin Bae and Nayoon Lee. The concept designers are Patryk Musielak (NANO), YoungJae Kim (MOSEY), Jiaheng Wei (ENROUTE) and Dinesh Raman (SPAREVROOM). 

MORPH was sponsored by Hyundai-Kia. The financial support enabled the Intelligent Mobility Design Centre of the Royal College of Art to conceive and explore new areas in transport experiences, vehicle design, digital technology integration, mobility systems and other research topics. We would like to thank Hyundai Motor’s German and Korean offices for their involvement in feedback and review during the research.

Special thanks to Dr. Cyriel Diels, Professor Stephen Boyd Davis and Professor Dale Harrow for reviewing and providing feedback during the research and for the final report.

Finally a special thank you to William Renel for designing the MORPH website, Jane Savory, Hannah Adeuya and Lulu Ishaq for managing the finance and logistics.

Launched in 2016 at the Royal College of Art, the Intelligent Mobility Design Centre (IMDC) leads research at the intersection of people, mobility and technology within a complex and changing urban and global environment.

The Royal College of Art is ranked the No. 1 art and design university by the QS World University Rankings, 2021.

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