- First Name
- A. J.
- Dec 8, 2019
- Reaction score
- Tesla X LR+, Lexus SUV, Toyota SR5, Toyota Landcruiser
- EE (Retired)
The designer is the guy that says "A truck that looks like a wedge of cheese would be really cool and sell like hotcakes." makes a model and shows it to people. If management likes the concept they call in the engineers and ask if they can build it at reasonable cost with reasonable performance and safety etc. IOW the engineers implement the designer's vision. Often the engineer forces the designer to vary some aspect of his design. For example he might tell the designer that he must make the wedge leding angle more accute in order to get drag coefficient down. They would then work together to come up with a design that meets the engineer's technical requirements and the desinger's aesthetic ones.I had no real understanding of the difference between designing and engineering. I thought they were virtually one in the same.
Perhaps some confusion arises because while the designer is thought of as the creative one, i.e. the artist, the engineer is an artist as well and equally creative. His job is to design the car beneath the skin by coming up with a synthesis of silicon, steel, lithium, plastic... and algorithms that works, is safe, easy to operate and looks good. The engineer spends many hours engaged in "design reviews" in which the topic of discussion may be whether to continue to use the off the shelf Texas Instruments DSP chips or source something new. Or there may be discussion of some nuance of body shape which will trim a pound or 2 of drag. WRT to the former the "designer" wouldn't know what these guys were talking about. WRT the latter he might not understand much about turbulent vs laminar flow but would certainly be interested in how the shape of the vehicle would change. It is pulling all this stuff together that makes producing a product that will be judged on both its technical and aesthetic merits (or lack thereof) so challenging.