Car designers – they just can’t get enough. Even after all the work that goes into sketching a modern automobile, they sometimes include hidden features you might not even notice. Known as Easter Eggs, the visual markings add a little extra personality, as if any of these cars really needs it.
Ever since Eminem drove one during the Super Bowl XLV broadcast, the Chrysler 200 has embodied the brand’s “Imported from Detroit” mantra. Well, the car is all new for 2015 and now features the city’s skyline embedded on the mat in the center console bin.
“Without taking ourselves too seriously, this shows how our team goes the extra mile in our design work by giving the interior a surprise element that shows some character and adds soul to the vehicle,” says Klaus Busse, head of interior design at Chrysler.
2Aston Martin Vanquish
Next time you see a Vanquish on the road (hey, it happens!), take a closer look at the taillights. This high-end sports coupe uses a neat visual trick: If you could move the taillights together, they would transform into the Aston Martin wing logo.
Marek Reichman, director of design at Aston Martin, says the British automaker added the visual cue so you could recognize the design feature even if you took away the logo on the back of the vehicle. “You still recognize the car as an Aston Martin – that is vitally important,” he says. “On the Vanquish, we use those wings to influence design.”
3Tesla Model S P85
Owners of the high-end Tesla Model S P85 can try this trick: Go to the “About” screen on the car’s 17-inch touchscreen and press and hold the P85 logo. Eventually, a picture of the Tesla development team pops up on the display.
Byron Soulopoulos, president of the Tesla Club in Belgium, found the egg by accident. Other drivers have accumulated even more hidden features in the club’s forum.
Here’s a neat one to show your friends…at night. When you unlock the 2014 Ford Mustang, a light shines under the side mirrors, projecting the Mustang logo on the ground.
A Ford spokesman says the effect is called the Pony Puddle Lamp and is intended to add some fun and whimsy to the iconic car. It will carry over to the all-new 50th Anniversary 2015 ’Stang.
Jeep tends to hide subtle hidden features in its off-road vehicles. On the Grand Cherokee, for example, the headlights feature the image of the grille from a World War II-era Willys Jeep. The upcoming Jeep Renegade is no different. Etched in the clutter bin under the radio, there’s a topographical map of the Moab desert in Utah, one of the world’s top off-roading destinations.
“It’s efforts like this that not only allow the designers to be creative but have some fun,” explains Busse, who says the ultimate goal is to make customers happy when they find the hidden perk.
6Chevrolet Corvette Stingray
Dr. Jeff Daum
The stunning seventh-gen Corvette Stingray has a hidden feature as well. That is, apart from its adaptive suspension and tire squeal-inducing power. On the rear window, the tint around the edge is decorated with Corvette crossed-flag logos.
“We want to give customers some details they may not notice at the dealership,” says Corvette product manager Harlan Charles. “They may not notice until the first time they wash their car in the driveway,” he adds, noting that the engineers, not the designers, suggested the feature.