Jury-GRANDS PRIX DU DESIGN / Published on January 16, 2021
President, Industrial Designer
The Creative Unit inc.
Saint-Bruno-de-Montarville, Québec, Canada
PROUST QUESTIONNAIRE – PEOPLE OF DESIGN VERSION!
What prescient youthful memory relates to your present career?
In my first year of primary school, in a religious and moral education class, we were encouraged to develop our “talents” (the parable of the talents). From that moment on, I set myself the goal of not wasting my gift in drawing and to see it grow, I’m still working on it today!
What are three basic rules you learned from your mentors?
■ Whatever is worth doing at all, is worth well doing … at under schedule!
■ Sketching is not a means, the true objective is industrial production and commercial success.
■ To promote and defend industrial design with every stroke of the pencil.
What project launched your career?
It was the 1991 Bombardier Ski-Doo Formula Mach 1 snowmobile (Design: Sam Anselme Y. Lapointe and Martin Aubé) that launched my career as an industrial designer.
Photo: Motoneige Bombardier Ski-Doo Formula Mach 1 1991
Photo Credit: Bombardier inc.
Country : Canada
Full description at the bottom of page
Fresh out of the University of Montreal in 1988, two pioneers of Quebec industrial design trusted me, Jean Labbé (ACCD), who hired me to Bombardier’s Venus automobile project, and Sam Anselme Y. Lapointe, who took me under his wing at Bombardier Recreational Products.
The Ski-Doo Formula Mach 1 1991 snowmobile became my first commercial achievement with a good degree of autonomy. I later had the honor of working for Denys Lapointe for a long time at BRP.
Some enthusiasts still say that the Formula Mach 1 1991 is “ the best- looking sled skidoo ever built.” QUITE PROUD!
Any music playing while you work?
I work in silence.
As GOETHE would say:
« Silence is essential to mobilize the creatrive and latent forces… »
That being said, music motivates! For me, Aznavour, Gershwin, Mozart, Beethoven, The Beatles, The Beach Boys (Pet sounds), Jean-Pierre Ferland, Robert Charlebois, MC Solaar, King Krimson, Delirium, Sarah McLachlan, Daft Punk, The XX, Johnny Cash, Sam & Dave, Frank Sinatra, Dave Brubeck, Doubles Six and around Christmas, when joy is everywhere and I’ve finished a mandate: Vince Guaraldi Trio: Charlie Brown Christmas.
Do you work in PJs or three-piece suits?
My studio attire: A design trench comfortable combat uniform. For all expedition outside my studio, to teach or meet clients: the SUIT!
What is your current design state of mind?
“ It is not beauty that endears, it is love that makes us see beauty.” , Leo Tolstoy (War and Peace, 1869).
And when times are harder, as Marcel Gotlib, my favorite cartoonist says in Truc-en-vrac (1977–1985):
“Do you realize that if pain were not hurtful, it would be perfectly bearable?”
What living designer/architect do you most admire?
GIORGETTO GIUGIARO, at age 82, he is still and always the Maestro of automobile design!
What past designer/architect inspires you the most?
What is your most marked design quality?
Again, influenced by the parable of the talents … my ability to imagine and represent concepts in a fast manner, through precise sketches that showcase Fine Arts academic visual communication theories…
How would you like your designs to go down in history?
I would like people to remember that with few resources, a lot of enthusiasm, effort and creativity, I will have carried out, as part of a team, the industrial design of more than thirty recreational vehicles, utility and military, designed and manufactured locally in Québec.
All that thanks to the parable of the talents and much not-always-perceptible humour!
What peer quality do you most value?
Probity, talent, humility, professionalism, design sensitivity, rigour and a sense of humour.
Which project is the epitome of your work?
The industrial design of the Sora Generation 1 Electric Motorcycle (2009) and the Generation 2 – Superbike – (2019), by Lito Motorcycles founded by engineer Jean-Pierre Legris, eng.
Red Dot Concept Award 2011 and the Grands Prix du Design 2012.
Photo: SORA electric motorcycle byt LITO Green
Photo Credit: Christian Bergeron: Agense Newbase media
Full description at bottom of page
Photo: SORA Generation 2 electric motorcycle (Superbike) by LITO Motorcycle
Photo Credit: LITO Motorcycles
Full description at bottom of page
How are your country of belonging’s values reflected in your work?
I have repeatedly developed the industrial design of vehicles and accessories for snow. Nordicity, which largely defines Québec, is at the heart of many of my projects.
Results of teamwork: five snowmobiles produced by Ski-doo and many other BRP prototypes, modular Ski-doo and CKX helmets for winter, the DTS 129 off-road motorcycle conversion system for deep snow from Camso, much of the bodywork (with Pininfarina) of the New Bison snow groomer by Prinoth (2019) and exterior styling of the all-terrain oversized wheeled truck (snow, mud, water and more) Fat truck by Zeal Motor.
What always inspires you?
Winter nature and the shapes daily objects take when redrawn by snow accumulations and wind effects.
If a spell were to transform you into an object, by all means, what would you like to be, and why?
I would take the form of my black Volkswagen Passat B5.5 2002, built on the PL45 platform common to the Audi A4. It will soon turn 19, so I guess it would make me younger! It is perfectly preserved and maintained. My car buying philosophy is to choose a quality product, durable, honest, with a timeless style and to do preventive maintenance.
It’s kind of like the village priest’s car! Amen!
What is your favorite place in the world?
Inside my Industrial Design Studio in Saint-Bruno, sitting at my drawing table, a place I’ve rarely left in the past 16 years…
What design or architecture project do you wish you would have thought of yourself?
The Bombardier B7 Snowmobile (1936) designed by Joseph-Armand Bombardier himself. It must have been quite a formidable era to witness!
If you could host any THREE GUESTS, past or alive, over for dinner, who would you choose and what would you dare serving?
Marcel Gotlib, the cartoonist for his humour, Stanley Kubrick and Raymond Loewy, to discuss creation and sketching. We certainly would have little appetite to eat!
What is your mantra?
“Whatever is worth doing at all, is worth doing well.” Nicolas Poussin and Philip Chesterfield’s appropriation.
What is your dream? THINK BIG!
To found the first ever Quebecois electric automobile design studio… or to be its first consultant!
Bombardier’s snowmobile Ski-Doo Formula Mach 1 1991
Photo Credit : Bombardier inc.
1991 – Valcourt, Canada
Before the 1991 Mach 1 (…) arrived in the showrooms of Ski-Doo dealers, Bombardier conducted extensive consumer research and borrowed the technology from its Formula 1 double-deck racing snowmobiles. The style of the Mach 1 was the result of consumer (and marketing) input. Performance drivers demanded a strong sense of power and speed, which was equivalent to the colour black. The theme went from nose to tail with an aggressive graphic package.
The theme of the race manifested itself in the form of wind tunnel tests to refine the aerodynamic bonnet and help place the front duct to cool the components under the bonnet. These naca ducts invite airflow with minimal disturbance to the outer surface and have been used in fighter aircraft and NASCAR racers for many years. The snowmobile’s side vents not only provided cooling air, but also filtered the warm air exiting to the pilot. Before the 1991 Mach 1 (…) arrived in the showrooms of Ski-Doo dealers, Bombardier conducted extensive consumer research and borrowed the technology from its Formula 1 double-deck racing snowmobiles. The style of the Mach 1 was the result of consumer (and marketing) input. Performance drivers demanded a strong sense of power and speed, which was equivalent to the colour black. The theme went from nose to tail with an aggressive graphic package.
The theme of the race manifested itself in the form of wind tunnel tests to refine the aerodynamic bonnet and help place the front duct to cool the components under the bonnet. These naca ducts invite airflow with minimal disturbance to the outer surface and have been used in fighter aircraft and NASCAR racers for many years. The snowmobile’s side vents not only provided cooling air, but also filtered the warm air exiting to the pilot.
But, of course, style and race-inspired design don’t matter if the snowmobile is a slug. That’s why the top-of-the-line Mach 1 came with the 617 twin-cylinder engine. The previous season, Ski-Doo Formula III driver Wayne Nicholsen used a prototype 617cc engine to propel him to seven victories and two seasonal championships. The production engine featured both a rotary valve induction system using two 40mm Mikuni carburetors and two RAVE (Rotax Automatic Variable Exhaust) exhaust valves. The claimed result was to increase low-end torque for strong acceleration and mid-range performance while maintaining a constant top speed.
Moto électrique SORA de LITO Green Motion (LITO Motorcycles)
Photo Credit : Christian Bergeron: Agense Newbase media
2010 – Longueuil, Canada
LITO’s team of specialists, consisting of engineers and industrial designers, is proud to present a new generation of electric motorbikes. The SORA motorbike, with its refined design, advanced engineering and superior speed and performance, offers you an unparalleled riding experience.
We’ve pushed the boundaries of design and the avant-garde to create a motorbike that respects the environment without compromising style, speed or power. Because it’s electric, the SORA is quiet, environmentally friendly and energetic. It can be recharged at home using a conventional outlet or a quick charger. The SORA can also be recharged at a level 2 charging station for greater autonomy. In addition, it requires very little maintenance.
– The electric turn
At LITO, we believe that electric motorbikes are the vehicles of the future. That’s why we designed the SORA, an uncompromising motorbike that is fuel efficient without sacrificing speed, power or performance. With its cutting-edge design, smooth handling, instant torque and gung-ho acceleration, the SORA offers a unique and exhilarating riding experience.
Since the SORA is powered by electricity, it allows you to reduce your fuel consumption and protect the environment by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The SORA is quiet and vibration-free, and can be recharged using a conventional outlet or a quick charger at home. It can also be recharged at a Tier 2 charging station for long-lasting performance and requires very little maintenance. All you have to do is sit back, grab a firm grip and set off on the adventure of a lifetime.
Industrial design, The Creative Unit inc. 2009-2010
Sora Generation 2 electric motorbike from the Quebec company Lito Motorcycles.
Photo Credit : LITO Motorcycles
2020 – Longueuil, Canada
Presented as a superbike, it accelerates from 0 to 100 km / h in three (3) seconds.
The three-phase, liquid-cooled, permanent magnet, three-phase AC motor, powered by a lithium-ion battery, produces 66 ft / lbs of torque and 108 horsepower. It features an aluminum chassis with Öhlins suspension, and carbon fiber wheels and bodywork. Curb weight is 550 pounds, 25 pounds less than the original Sora. Industrial design, The Creative Unit inc. 2018-2019
NRC Industries – CSR65 Heavy Duty Recovery Vehicle
Photo Credit: Sonya Messier photographe
2019 – Saint-Paul-d’Abbotsford, Canada
Designed for the toughest situations, this Sliding Rotator develops power and versatility that will leave you speechless. The CSR65’s state-of-the-art features and technologies make the operator’s life easier and, let’s face it, much more enjoyable.
The Grands Prix du Design 12th edition
It took several years of development to design a completely new towing equipment DNA. Obsessed with the idea of continuous progress, NRC seeks to achieve everything that is technically possible in an inimitable way. All this, in order to bring exceptional equipment such as the new CSR65 to market.
25% more storage space, stiffer structure, multi-line quick connector, retractable control panel, access panel for stabilizer chocks and many other new features complete the new CSR. It stands out from the crowd with its completely redesigned bodywork that gives it a bold and expressive look.
Motomobile ENERGYA of Higgins-Aubé
Photo Credit: L’Unité Créative inc.
2009 – Saint-Bruno, Canada
The Higgins-Aubé Inc. Energya motorbike is an advanced concept protected by industrial design (design patent) in the United States. The three-wheeled vehicle Energya ™, now also known as the motomobile, is designed as a light and high-performance vehicle. Similar to a sports car where the driver and passenger sit side by side. The motomobile Energya ™ has a rear engine that drives a single wheel at the rear. The vehicle behaves mainly like an open-wheel racing car. The vehicle has a distinctive, aggressive, advanced design that reflects its level of performance.
Red dot design award – winner 2009 – Design concept
Fat Truck by Zeal Motor inc.
Photo Credit:L’Unité Créative inc.
2018 – Bromont, Canada
“Fat Truck”, as it is called, is an elongated, smooth, aerodynamic quality aluminium box with a robust tubular chassis and exoskeleton, mounted on huge wheels supporting ultra low pressure tyres with strong pallets (…) for customers with extreme off-road transport needs. People such as those who build or maintain power lines, pipelines, telecommunications towers and wind farms, or those who conduct search and rescue operations in exceptionally isolated and/or inhospitable terrain”. Marc Lachapelle
Electric police motorbike LITO POLICE – Town of Longueuil
Photo credit: Sonya Messier photographe
2015 – Longueuil Canada
Electric motorbike LITO POLICE – Industrial design by L’Unite Creative / The Creative Unit inc. for LITO Green Motion.
The 2017 Grand Prix du Design – Transportation Design category.
The SORA electric police motorbike project was completed in five months with a team of six designers and a limited budget. We used a vehicle development process to design a police motorbike equivalent or superior to the BMW R1100 RT (in certain aspects related to police use and electric technology). The basis of the vehicle is the SORA electric motorbike from LITO Green Motion. The mandate included a number of challenges such as the transformation of a sports motorbike without a front fairing or windscreen, optimised for performance, into a comfortable, aerodynamic and highly functional motorbike for a police application with a minimum of structural and functional changes. We had to keep the DNA of LITO Green Motion. We worked with the SPAL (Service de Police de l’Agglomération de Longueuil) to meet their specific needs through visual theme presentations, sketches, renderings and an ergonomic test bench. Materials ABS / PA, polycarbonate, AL 6061-T6, stainless steel series 304.
Motorbike conversion system DTS 129
Photo credit: Camso inc.
2015 – Magog Canada
The 2020 Off-Road Motorcycle Conversion System provides deep snow performance and improved agility – The best of both worlds – Drive year-round with high-performance single-rail track suspension technology. Benefits: Vehicle integration – Manoeuvrability – Deep snow performance