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The Crowd Sourcing Competition [Round 47]

@Maxbombe and @66mazda proudly present the following competition to this distinguished community:

CSC37: American Comeback


Shinka Alliance


TLDR: Your job is to create an executive class sedan that will be badged as a Kurokama and sold in the US.

2020: Toyota City, Japan
Kaizen Corporation world headquarters


It is undeniable that the current COVID-19 pandemic has caused some unusual events.
With how hard it hit the automobile industry, it accelerated the ongoing trend of mergers and buyouts, as automakers sought to reduce costs in an era of financial recessions and increasingly stringent regulations.

One of the mergers that rose from this situation was Shinka Alliance, a merger of two Japanese giants known for their innovative mindset, Kaizen and Kurokama. Where Kaizen prefers performance and luxury, Kurokama has dependability and efficiency on its side. This also very much defines where their cars sell well.

Kaizen is a big name in the US, where their performance, prestige, and aggressive style mirror values of the American dream. However, these very same values reduce their effective presence in European and Asian markets (with the exception of Japan, Korea), where they are often seen as too inefficient. Since 2008, in these areas, Kaizens are mainly obtained through special order, the only cars they officially sell there in a dealer network are of their subsidiaries, RCN and Eon.

On the other hand, EU and Asia is where Kurokama thrives, often viewed as the perfect combination of performance and dependability. Their SNB-sourced engines push the limits of petrol engines, hitting efficiency figures that rival diesels while still having respectable performance. However, this makes the brand uncompetitive in the US, as by the standards of Americans, their performance is lackluster and the manual transmissions makes them hard to drive. Since 2006, only two models have been offered there.

This merger, however, was not a sudden decision, but a culmination of decades of cooperation and the common dream of progress. It seeks to address the drawbacks and bolster strengths of both companies, especially regarding various international markets.

Thus, one of the main goals of this merger is to return Kurokama to the US market.
It was determined that a flagship model would greatly assist in garnering interest for the foreign brand along with its more affordable sedans and crossovers. This flagship name would revive the vaunted “Sora” name in the form of an executive class sedan.

Your job is to create a compelling, premium/upmarket, and modern design that incorporates Kurokama and Kaizen cues.

Design cues to take in mind

The refreshed 2020 Kurokama SC

With some outside help.

Various 2020 Kaizen models

Some of them with help from @Reizei


Kurokama cars are mostly defined by their flowing and dynamic lines, often guided by aerodynamics of the car (often resulting in a rather round front).

They also display extensive use of piano black plastic in their design, so that is another thing to keep in mind. It often supports the design by drawing out the dynamic shaping.

For reasons stated earlier, Kurokamas also stray from fake vents and grilles, and while we are at it, also from fake exhausts.

The only time you will find a sealed vent on a Kurokama is when it is not sealed on the performance version.

Another, and almost the most important thing to keep in mind is how their DRL are shaped, and how their
headlights are defined. Kurokama has the signature Bracket DRL design, also often called “Sharpeye”.

Another signature for Kurokama headlights is the round projector for low beams. That must always be present.

Excerpt from an english project that describes the styling cues

Like most cars, the front forms a “face,” a critical part of its identity. The headlights are shaped to resemble a fist, the outlines of the DRLs or projector shape resembling individual knuckles.
All these styling cues should combine to create not only the impression of both a fist punching through
the air and a slightly angry face, but also lends an aggressive, understated, and refined style.
Giving an impression of effortless speed, they highlight the upscale car’s sportiness and
practicality, which are backed up by the drivetrain and interior options. The car looks like it
could push others out of its way, asserting its (and its owner’s) dominance on a crowded road.

AVCM writeup

The design language is commonly referred to as the “fist,” meant to resemble a knuckle/fist flying through the air, conveying a sense of punching the air around it in a show of raw power, effortless speed, and sheer performance, pushing the energy from the rear to the front. In this case, the rear (especially the lights) takes inspiration from the tense tendons on the base of the palms that “rise up” as one rolls a fist and punches. pushing energy to the front.
A reference can also be made to tensed up muscles of a punch. The top curve formed by the side vent sacrifices harmonious front to rear flow, opting to mimic the side profile of a tensed up muscle. One should note how it seems that people depict active muscles are not relaxed, flowy (in a single direction) figurines, but rather a series of contrasting curves and lines that combine to form a sense of tension and potential energy. This also has the effect of visually transferring energy from the rear to the front, reinforced by the door crease along the top that seems to transfer energy, and the bottom body molding that seems to tilt the car forward.

On the other hand, Kaizen design is one of tenseful, aggressive style. Their cars often feel like there is a beast inside ready to be unleashed.

However, by any means, they avoid being a cacophony of varying styles.

The general design of a Kaizen should resemble a fist punching through the air, especially in the frontal and side area. This look is enhanced by a crease that runs from side to the upper edge of the taillights.

Kaizen, much like Kurokama, is also not a fan of fakery, and thus also does not use fake exhausts. In the same note, they are also all for dynamic looking and aerodynamically practical vents and creases. A flat surface is often seen as undesirable.

Your main challenge would be to try to combine these sometimes contradictory elements.


Basic requirements

  • Model/trim years set to 2020 (it will technically be a 2025 model)

However, if you submit it before the deadline, and get the year wrong, then I will give you as many attempts as needed for you to meet the year regulations.

  • 4 door sedan liftback/fastback body style (this also means two rows of seats)

Please don’t submit a wagon. VERTICAL TAILGATES/TRUNKS ARE BANNED IF YOU SUBMIT A HATCHBACK. If you submit a hatchback your car will receive additional visual scrutiny.

  • Wheelbase: 2.8 to 3.0m (normal rounding rules apply)

  • Front engine, rear wheel drive

  • It should be closer to a production car than a concept.

  • The entry must include the Kurokama badge


Now, we must do some housekeeping.

Special Rules

  • Planned start of submissions
    Tuesday, November 3, 2020
    12:00 am
    Time zone: EST

  • Planned end of submissions
    Sunday, December 13, 2020
    11:59 pm
    Time zone: EST

  • Submission messages regulations

  • Naming convention
    Car model/engine family: CSC37 - (discourse username)

NOTE: Please check that your username is written correctly, submitting a car with an untaggable username will render such submission invalid.
However, if you submit it before the deadline, and get the name wrong, then I will give you as many attempts as needed for you to meet the naming regulations.
(Ask this question: if you copied your username from the .car in game name, and pasted it in discourse with the @ function, would discourse suggest your name and your name only?)

Car trim: Your car name
Engine variant: Engine name

  • Interior design (optional)
    When you submit your car file, you may specify the interior of “any” car you wish to emulate. This can be done by simply sending an image of the interior.
    The interior specifications should be on the same message chain as the .car file submission (eg. you can send the interior as a response to your .car file submission if I confirmed your submission without interior specs, or include interior specs with your .car file message if you plan to send them both at the same time). Realism rules will not apply here, this is purely design based.

  • Forum post
    You must post at minimum a picture of your car and the car name. Ads and photoshops will be much loved.

  • Other notes
    Everything not specified in this rulebook is fair game. However we reserve the right to change rules at any time, with clear notifications on this forum.
    When submissions start, changes will be minimized.
    We will notify and try to help you to the best of our ability if any rules are broken before the submission due date. Do not hesitate to ask questions.
    If there is a technical issue right before the deadline, then due date extensions (grace periods) can be negotiated.

You know what, just get it right the first time… We would appreciate that so much.



Old version for archive purposes

Founded in 1937 as the firearms division of Toyota Automatic Loom Works and spun off in 1945, Kaizen Corporation has shamelessly leveraged their precise and skillful gunsmithing experience to develop and produce some of Japan’s most luxurious, engaging, and relentless automobiles. From pioneering the super-sedan, adopting almost every major innovative technology, having a heavy presence in motorsports, planning for trends and regulations 10 years ahead, or simply offering (relatively) affordable Japanese luxury, the manufacturer seeks to define their namesake: continuous improvement. On the world stage, it competes with highly prestigious brands such as Mercedes-Benz and BMW, while its other brands, RCN and Eon, take care of more mainstream competition.

Founded by Toichi Kurokama in 1954, Kurokama primarily focused on small, cheap utility cars that were in demand in post-WWII Japan, before focusing on more mainstream models in 1959. After a dark period from 1965 when the founder was killed in an automobile accident, a small racing garage known as ‘SNB Japan’ signed a contract on making engines for their cars, mainly due to SNB using Kurokama cars to race. Due to its outright success, this partnership still goes on today, to the point where Kurokama today owns SNB. Well known for highly economical yet fun to drive and safe cars, along with well-regarded turbocharged engines and anticipating and taking advantage of the current crossover craze, Kurokama actively cultivates a “lifestyle” image, its cars appealing to a wide range of consumers.

As the Covid-19 pandemic hit the auto industry hard, it accelerated the ongoing trend of mergers and buyouts, as automakers sought to reduce costs in an era of financial recessions and increasingly stringent regulations. This created some unusual bedfellows.

Perhaps Kaizen’s strongest market is in the United States, where it is regarded as a highly prestigious, sporty, and luxurious brand, much like BMW. Being perhaps the first Japanese luxury car brand to make inroads in the US, its soaring reputation is very much ingrained in the American mindset. However, it does not have much presence in Europe, often being overshadowed by the German brands, the cars often seen as too inefficient and not prestigious enough. Kaizen would withdraw completely from the European market in 2008, selling only RCN and Eon models. However, the brand is gaining popularity in China and other countries in Asia, due to then newly acquired brand, Eon, that focuses on budget and electric cars, along with the general prestige of the brand.

On the other hand, Kurokama is one of the few successful Japanese brands in the European Union, hitting the perfect combination of economy and performance. Kurokamas consistently push the limits of petrol engines, hitting efficiency numbers that rival diesels, while providing performance when needed. This would make the brand particularly uncompetitive in the USDM market, where despite being comfortable, they are often seen as underpowered and difficult to drive, due to their dedication to the manual transmission. Kurokama would nearly withdraw from the US in 2006, selling only 2 models afterwards.

Thus, this pairing would not be one of those sudden relationships, instead being the culmination of decades of cooperation that addressed drawbacks and bolstered strengths, opening up new markets and enabling the proliferation of new technology.

One of the main goals of this merger is to enable Kurokama to “return” to the US market. It was determined that a “flagship” model would greatly assist in garnering interest for the “foreign” brand along with its more affordable sedans and crossovers. This flagship name would revive the vaunted “Sora” name in the form of an executive class sedan (E-segment).


is there any specific badge pieces used to make the badge look right? i assume its a couple of bits layered over


Submissions are open!
Until November 20th

I will allow submissions from open beta

Zephorus E777

3.5LV6 pushing 420+hp to the rear wheels through a 9 speed auto.

No interior will be my downfall


Jokes on you. You really thought I could be bothered to make an interior? the badge is close enough right?



2025 Kurokama FBK Hybrid by Sakai Design Studio

To commemorate Hololive VTuber Shirakami Fubuki for hitting 1 million subscribers and to make my car more original, Sakai Design Studio teams up with Kurokama and Kaizen with the FBK Hybrid, an executive sedan that makes every trip worth it.

hehe copyright go brr


just with a bigger infotainment screen

Kurokama S70 by Beanos
it has turbo twin I think

That thing you see when you enter a car I think

Is lazy to make one


Goddamnit I’m 2 days late

Well looks like I did a few things terribly wrong

  • I forgot to issue a deadline reminder

  • My deadline is not very midterm friendly…


The new deadline is Sunday, December 13, 2020 at 11:59 PM EST.

The following are eligible for one resubmission, no questions asked.
They will also get a dedicated judging session, which will start off the round (after the instabins).
(No rules have been changed)

All other resubmissions will abide by the rules

A big benefit is that judging can basically start ASAP after the deadline
And hopefully the update is a lot more usable by then.


might be a bit off with this one, but here goes nothing


Anyways I did forget to announce that the deadline is over.
Are there any objections to the current deadline?


CSC37: American Comeback

Full Version


December 19, 2020
Toyota City, Japan

(everyone is spread out and wearing a mask)


High ranking personnel from the SHINKA brands (and their US/North American subsidiaries): Kaizen, Kurokama, RCN, and Eon, are gathered among a long table, along with the main designer from Spander Design.

The lead designer of Kaizen Corporation North America hands a portable hard drive with the files of submissions for the new Kurokama executive class sedan bid, from major and amateur designers alike. This drive is inserted into a laptop, where the screen is shared on a large flat TV. As this is an international competition, and knowing the current world situation, it was not possible to do their usual studio preview. Blender style files and images will have to do.

The first car to pop up is a striking design from an iconic Italian sports car manufacturer…

Zephorus E777

First impressions were very positive, and the team was very enamored with the well sculpted, tense, and purposefully aggressive fascia that conveyed a sense of subtle elegance. It really fits the “power fist” theme well, as it looks like the car is crouching forward and ready to punch through the air, and the headlights give off a vague fist style. In addition, the grill pieces fit together well, and every fixture there adds to the powerful aesthetic. This however, makes it more suitable for a Kaizen than the more thoughtful and harmonic look of a Kurokama.
Worth noting is how well the front and rear seamlessly work together. The rear is generally well designed, bringing a nice dash of elegance that fits the purposeful themes of Kurokama and Kaizen. Unfortunately, the rear bumper arrangement looks like a last minute thought, and is integrated poorly with the rest of the design, requiring more molding and thought, especially for the application of the exhausts.

The DRLs are well placed on the outside edges, and the lights fully utilize the width of the car, which along with the fender flares give an impression of a car that can assert its dominance on the road, butting out others.

One interesting detail is the chrome side lines, which seamlessly integrate the door handles, and makes a good attempt at connecting the front and rear. It lines up flawlessly with the rear lights, but the team would prefer the front section to line up with the oversized side vents instead of the door sills, as its current configuration completely wrecks the muscle look that is augmented by the lower molding, and causes some cacophony of contrasting geometric and biological design elements. In addition, none of the flat side design emphasis dynamic shaping. This is made worse by the lack of trim to bring focus to the side, making it look incomplete. On the other hand, the team were the fan of the roof, with a nicely integrated panoramic sunroof.

However, the most severe of the issues is the fact that this design (in their view) does not get the fundamentals of a premium executive sedan. Particularly noteworthy is the observation that the bottom of the A-pillar is pushed too front forward, fiving the side profile an awkward, cab-forward profile that hints at a FWD layout, which is undesirable for a premium car, much less one being sold in the US. The unusually low slope of the A pillar is not compensated by the higher slope C pillar, giving a short bonnet, poor proportions, and a downmarket/smaller look style wise.

Also not helping is the potentially awkward design choices of the mirrors, they are placed a bit too forward, and contribute to the FWD cab forward look that further detracts from the intended premium executive sedan feel.

Overall, the Zephorus E777 manages to blend aggressiveness and elegance in a highly compelling package, while getting several fundamental concepts wrong. Regardless, it serves as a good way to start up the process.

A Kaizen executive commented how it would serve as a nice basis for their compact TR series.

A file from a legendary Romanian designer was loaded up.

Kaizen Kurokama


penguin screams


Some of the Kurokama and Kaizen officials gasps in horror at the gaping grill of the avant-garde sedan. At first glance, that grill gives off a vulgar and “dumb” appearance not befitting of a premium sedan, and could be repulsive to American buyers. The team also weren’t so convinced of the disorderly sides of the bottom vent, which reminded them of a shark’s gaping mouth (this is definitely NOT the car breaking itself). Also the amount of lights could be outright overwhelming to some, but this wasn’t seen as a general issue. In addition, the badging in the center of the grill was considered questionably placed, a placement on one of the low corners would have been much more appropriate.


However, once that subsided, it was clear that the bold design is able to give off elegance in a a distinctively European style. The slim headlights give off a purposeful and somewhat minimalistic feel, with a crash course in overt aggressiveness. Every front light is seamlessly integrated in the fascia, especially the flawless fit of the foglights and grill. The disconnected light strips do give off a vague Kurokama association, an arrangement that might as well be unrecognizable as a Kurokama to the most consumers.

However it is clear that despite those gaping flaws in the car’s design choices, it does get the basics right, with a relatively long hood and right sized overhangs, with a good proportions. The general profile gives the impression and slicing through the air, which is good for a Kurokama, although there were some comments about how it looked more like a bubble, as the cabin did seem slightly pushed forward. However, this also leads it to lack the desired dynamic muscle looks of a premium sedan, giving it a tamer appearance. The very smooth design (and most glaringly lack of body molding on the top part of the side) led some to see it as a passive low energy design. However, the car uses black trim well, trim pieces on the bottom of the side and a black roof panel giving the car much needed definition in the shaping.

However any pretense of harmony and elegance is shattered by the half-done rear. The team did like the internals as an interesting take on the traditional Kurokama design, they are quite bold, which does match the front quite well. However, the boxy design meshes poorly with the slippery design, and they are hampered by the lack of wraparound, dating it significantly. In addition, there are no definite provisions for a license place, and the rear vent and exhaust area looks like an afterthought, making the car look blander. Fortunately, the general rear design does use its space quite well.

The team concluded that while the appreciation for the modern, striking, efficient, and smooth design is high, several turn-off design choices don’t do it much favor, and it was concluded that a market like China would appreciate such a bold design far more than the more conservative markets of the US, with unclear potential in Europe. Likewise, the executives see this proposal as having high potential throughout the SHINKA alliance.

The design from a longstanding partner is brought up.

Kurokama FBK Hybrid

The Sakai Design Studio submission represents a more traditional approach to a luxury Japanese sedan, and the team breathed a sigh of relief. The front is somewhat tamer than the Zephorus and the OME design, but exhibits chiseled and confident looks, a good balance of the Kurokama and Kaizen styles. The headlight internals resemble knuckles of a clenched fist ready for action, and molding is strategically placed to give depth. The smooth top grill section helps give a reasonably slick look, which helps modernize the front. The front vents are well designed, they use the space well, and mesh well with the general design, helping the design balance the demands of sportiness and luxury, with well integrated foglights. Overall, the team had the impression of the car not only having the power to punch through the air, but the patience to slip through it, something the previous two designs couldn’t balance as well. One area of contention was that there was no area for a license plate.

Furthermore, the car has very attractive proportions that are proper for a RWD premium executive sedan that will appeal to the American market. It uses its black trim on the side and roof well, giving the car a sharper appearance, although that lower side trim could be longer and slightly shorter (this might be a game issue though). However, the side molding received significant criticism, as it is poorly integrated, with the chunky dimensions conflicting with the dynamic intentions, giving an unfinished look. The team would prefer a single deeper indent. In addition, the forward side vents were seen as “not belonging” on the car.

The sloppily placed side decal was also a major glaring point.
It did not get better once the very flat rear came into view. While the rear vent area was seen as well designed and integrated, the exhausts would be better seen on a sport version, and would require significant reworking for daily use. Furthermore, the rear vents looked slapped on. The license plate area with connecting bar connects the rear lights very well. The outer edges of those lights were generally seen as too thin and weak (delicate), failing to bring a confident appearance that the front brought to the table, although the team had no objections to the light layout. Furthermore, the rear is overly flat, with a lack of depth from no body molding, and overly round and smooth integration of the sides and rear.

Overall though, the Japanese design presents a particularly compelling case for its adoption, nailing the fundamentals while requiring some working of the details.

The file from an enthusiast American designer is loaded up.

Kurokama S70

The bulging front looks significantly bulkier and muscular than the other submissions, to the point of being brash and perhaps unsophisticated, as it brings an impression of bring too tall and unwieldy. Part of this is the large body molding on the bottom that add some nice punch. Lights heavily use Kurokama design elements, and help bolster the bullish looks by using the wide space in a well defined manner. The general foglight design strongly mirrors the TU2 update of the K612 generation Kaizen SC, and does a reasonably good attempt of bringing some elegance to the design, although not quite as fitting for the Kurokama compared to the Kaizen, as it simply looks like it is floating above the abyss of the vent. The hexagonal arrangement of the grill and vents are a nice touch, but the design could be even bolder by making the grill wider.

This muscular theme extends to the side, which actually uses its shorter bonnet to its advantage. One potential problem is how it heavily resembles a liftback, which might not do so well in the American market. It does vaguely resemble a cheetah ready to spring up, this tension being augmented by the well designed side molding, although the top molding could be deeper. The door handles are a bit thin and jut out a bit too much. Some black trim on the bottom would further complete the design, much like it did on the roof. These changes could make the side much more dynamic, a significant improvement over the current relatively flat design.
This design was considered to have the best rear bumper arrangement of the 4, featuring well integrated rear reflectors and exhausts in a meticulous and modern housing. The lights are a proper blend of traditional design cues and a more modern and confident application, fully utilizing their space, and connected well by the license plate area and light connecting bar.

Unfortunately, this is heavily impeded by the fact that most of the rear remains unused, an issue that also plagues the FBK. This could be resolved by the use of body molding. It looks very empty and incomplete, begging for some more dynamic touches.

After a few hours of meticulous and holistic review, the SHINKA team pick up their order from an unidentified restaurant. Shortly after they return, a pretty intensive debate pops up…



Congratulations @Reizei, your submission has been selected as the basis for a new generation of Kurokama executive class cars! Once finalized, it will be christened the Sora, and will revive the venerable nameplate, while spearheading Kurokama’s revival in the American automotive market.

However it would be wise to note that all 4 designs will have influence in the production model, as they all brought a useful characteristic to the table.

.1. @Reizei
TIE 2. @Be_gone_thot
TIE 2. @Riley
.3. @OME


Personal proportion notes


max is a troll

shut up css


@66mazda thanks man, this review made me laugh first thing in the morning :))


don’t know why it’s not updating even though everything looks fine in my editor
well looked like adding this: and that: to the bottom of OME’s section (right before the detail cutoff) worked.
Thanks @The_Stig_Is_A_Spy

wait i won?

I might be able to host CSC38 in about a week or so. Thanks for hosting @66mazda (and @Maxbombe)!


Also as the stig’s fix broke OME’s images, I shall include them here for your reference


2006, Bayonne (France)

Bayonne Automobiles is a French brand building everything from small city cars to luxury sedans. The Saturne, their small family car / C-segment hatchback, is one of their bestsellers, selling over 500000 copies in 2002. The age of the 1999 generation is showing though, as Sakai, Bayonne’s main design studio is running out of ideas for the car, and as a result, it hasn’t been facelifted since it’s release.

So Bayonne Automobiles is looking for a design studio / designer to design the new generation Saturne, to give the car and brand a new, quirky image and to set the path to a new generation for Bayonne Automobiles.


Must be a hatchback
Model/Trim year must be 2006 (though if there are exceptions like for using a newer body, please DM me)
Max wheelbase is 2.7m

Naming convention
Model / Family – CSC38 - [your username]
Trim – Bayonne Saturne by [your design studio / designer name]
Variant – whatever you want


:star: :star: :star: :star: :star:




:star: :star: :star: :star:


:star: :star: :star:

Era Correctness

The Bayonne Badge


Sakai’s Design Proposal

This design proposal by Sakai Design Studio was rejected due to it not having a back end and for being a bit too ahead of it’s time.

2005_Bayonne_Saturne_-_Sakai_Failed_Proposal.car (43.6 KB)

Real Life Inspiration

Click on the images for more pictures!


January 16, 2021, 12:00 CET

Link to Countdown


Do we need specific engines?

CSC is pure design