Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Innate Oddness of Hearse Design

White Angel
I've always fascinated by hearses... not so much because of the whole dead people thing, but because of the weird shapes that ensue when you take a car that was created as a luxury sedan and convert it into a stretched station wagon.

It's a bizarre design exercise. Coachmakers don't create hearses from vehicles that were intended to carry bulky cargo. Instead, for whatever reason, tradition dictates that hearses should be adapted from the kind of luxury cars that one might expect to find in the parking lot of a Midwestern country club.

Out of Auburn

And if the original base vehicle came off the assembly line with tailfins? Well, that's one of those challenges you just have to design around:

1961 Cadillac hearse

There's an entire Flickr group devoted to hearse vehicles, so let the design workshop begin.