Epcot Technifi-ing the Test Track

Sections: Chassis, Fuel Economy, Powertrain

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Everyone who is a car person probably remembers going to Epcot as a kid and riding on the Test Track sponsored by GM.  However, now the ride has shifted to Test Track by Chevrolet, supposedly to connect the core consumers attending the park closer to the brand rather than the corporate mothership.  But now a new dose of technology has taken the ride out of the 80s.  ‘Vehicle Designers’ (or 12-year-olds wearing Mickey ears) have the ability to alter vehicles and see how it will effect vehicle handling, ride quality, and fuel economy.

Hat tip to Design and Trend for the rest of the story:

Test Track, one of Disney’s popular attractions at Epcot in Florida, recently  opened its doors to the public after a major overhaul to integrate advanced  technology into the ride.

The new interactive ride called Test Track Presented by Chevrolet, designed  by General Motors in association with Disney, takes guests on an excursion that  details GM’s procedures to evaluate its vehicles. While the earlier version  allowed guests only to watch, GM and Disney ‘re-imagineered’ the concept  allowing guests to participate in the ride.

The new version now allows guests to participate in designing a virtual car  during the pre-show, after which they board a six-passenger ride vehicle that  helps them see how their design has fared on the driving course.

These designs are tested for how the car would handle the roughest roads or  most extreme weather conditions, fuel efficiency, maneuverability through the  tightest of turns and power.

The ride concludes in a renovated showroom featuring current and future  Chevrolet products.

Overall, the Test Track Presented by Chevrolet creates an experience that is  personal, future-focused and optimistic, and attempts to lure more youngsters  into designing automobiles. GM’s design manager Jeff Mylenek told Wired: “The  goal is that guests have an idea of what it’s like to be a designer – this is  their initiation. We wanted to give the guest a feeling about how the design  process works.”

Meanwhile, another change has been brought into the ride is that it is now  sponsored solely by Chevrolet, and not GM as a whole.

Explaining the reasons, Grace Morgan, GM’s director of auto shows, exhibits  and experiential marketing, told Forbes: “We go to market as individual brands,  not as GM. We picked Chevy as a brand face because of what it is and means and  how it has been a part of life’s journey for people around the country and  around the world – and how it has evolved to be modern and innovative but still  fun and adventurous.”


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