Left: Daihatsu Boon, Right: Boon Silk

New Toyota Passo & Daihatsu Boon: Not Designed To Alienate

According to Daihatsu, the Toyota Passo and the Daihatsu Boon were designed not to single out any target demographic but rather to appeal to what consumers who are looking to switch from lightweight vehicles have in mind when shopping for cars.

This intention was explained by Daihatsu’s Tokyo-based design section chief, Mr. Koji Shimizu. The reason behind this choice was that “the demographic for these cars ranges widely from young drivers to elderly drivers, so when we were developing, we didn’t try to design it for any one particular group of people but rather to cover a more neutral, large scope of potential buyers.”

Normally, when designing a car, the target demographic is set out beforehand. Mr. Shimizu reflected that “with the old models, we went down the route of the +HANA, where we targeted female drivers, but with the standard Boon and Passo models we went after males. However, the results we saw from that were that we weren’t sure how of a difference customers actually saw when viewing the cars.”

Using this perspective as a jumping off point, Daihatsu utilized their famous two-pronged approach when designing these new models. According to Mr. Noriaki Kawai of the same design department at Daihatsu as Mr. Shimizu, “Both pursued a genderless, unisex design. Old, young, male, female, we worked to build cars that would attract a wide range of drivers.” Moreover, “Since the Silk is defined by its high end specs, we implemented a plump face, intricate grill, and stylish headlamps. Compared with before, reflectors are decorated with silver, further speaking to the high quality nature of the vehicle.”

Also, Mr. Shimizu commented that “The car boasts a sense of stability and wideness. Looking at it from the front, the vehicle seems round, and the grill seems removed.” “Even after only seeing it for about a month, if you were to ask a child to draw a picture of a car, they would draw one with round characteristics. It was with this in mind that we designed the Silk.”

On the other hand, as for the standard model, “its design is one that anyone can appreciate” said Mr. Shimizu. “The standard is sleek and the Moda and Silk are round. We designated their designs so that users could choose between these two.”

[Translated by Bryce Clarke]