“If you want to have a complete collection of design then the VW Beetle is inevitable as the car that fundamentally changed automotive history”
Museum of Modern Art
The exterior development process beginnings with cleaning up the lines of the original shell and removing the donor’s visual anchors to a specific era. Included in this initial process are the vent glass, window frames, fuel lid, drip rails, door handles, mirrors, antenna, cabin air vent, top mounted indicators, bumpers and all chrome décor.
From this point the evolution of the car’s visual form begins. The bodywork proportions are adjusted for aerodynamics and a more confident, timeless stance. The Milivié team has invested great attention into designing the bodywork predominantly with concave and convex shapes which would have been feasible to implement using traditional coachbuilding techniques. The bonnet is moved forwards eight centimetres creating a high contrast nose from the side perspectives and flattened to improve the silhouette’s sporting line. Following this methodology, the revised engine cover is flattened and pushed inwards with a distinctive ducktail featuring an integral third brake light, to bring a dynamic profile to the rear.
Milivié’s bespoke front and rear fenders draw on design influences from earlier OEM and Porsche models whilst also increase in overall size to house the larger and broader wheels complementing the design. The idea of a slightly sportier appetite is increased with a raked rear stance. Subtly improved aerodynamic attitude is enhanced by moving the windscreen base forward, continuing the evolution of the curved windscreen from the 1303 variant. The visual flow of the exterior is supported by a clear horizontal base line achieved by aligning the wheel centre caps with the stepboard, the splitter transition and the lower edge of the rear fenders.
Finally, the fenders and bumpers are stretched outwards respectively with increasingly inverted angles towards the edges -increasing the poise of the overall vehicle. Exterior paint selection is from an extensive palette evolved from a unique selection including both heritage and contemporary shades. Curated by the Milivié design team and applied with flawless artistry the exterior is complimented by the client choice from a tasteful offering of upholstery and finish options.
Without doubt one of the standout visual cues of the Milivié Type 1 is the striking lighting package. Inspiration for the exterior lights comes from the final 1303 model. As the original car offers few large plain surfaces the design team decided to embrace more bodywork in the light design, creating a cohesive, flowing and more elegant character. The contemporary expression evidenced in the light package starts with inspiration from the 718 RSK. The running lights reflect a contoured texture across the flow of the body and relate back to the original vehicle. At the rear the shape of the original “elephant foot” lighting is echoed in the flush, elegant illumination that delivers high visibility without interrupting the smooth fender lines.
The Milivié 1 interior immediately creates a contemporary environment for the occupants. Whilst the dramatic treatment is contemporary in every aspect there are inspirations from numerous models across the entire genealogy of the donor. The larger and deeper dashboard, with the open storage compartments, echo the 1938 prototypes. The door cards have familiar inputs from the iconic 911 whilst the under-dash climate control unit silhouette from the first production series is mirrored in Milivié’s central dashboard controls.
The twin display screens, which are housed in a handcrafted piano wood housing, sit above the dash with a plain surface to the left and right in a similar fashion to the 1303. The driver information and infotainment systems are represented by twin 12.3” screens for which bespoke software has been developed in-house by the Milivié team. The three selections of display can be switched by simply swiping. The instrument screen designs include a contemporary signature screen focused on representing essential information through dynamic shapes and colors, a classic layout mirroring early brand correct analog instruments and finally an extended data screen showing the readings of all sensors throughout the car in a text-based display. The infotainment screen also displays an analog clock echoing the character of the 1302 OEM clocks.
Driver and passenger accommodation take a significant departure from the original vehicle, highlighting the Milivié 1 as a pinnacle vehicle. 4 individual bucket seats create a purposeful interior space, with a ground up new centre console positioned between each row – a layout more common in the latest contemporary sports machinery. Each seat is heated via thermal structures within the carbon fibre honeycomb and features bespoke controls delivering 0-100% power. Upholstery comes from Germany’s most experienced upholsterer and is delivered flawlessly using cutting edge techniques, having delivered upholstery in over a million cars. The process includes the use of a semi-mechanical membrane lamination for the upholstery process. Each upholstered panel is then lifespan simulated with extreme heat cycle and vibrational tests. A bespoke chemical surface treatment is applied to adjacent areas in the interior to ensure no squeaking sounds are able to be produced.
Continuing the adoption of the latest in interior automotive technology is the use of smart textile and sensor integration for non-screen interfaces. This allows the entire of the interior to be historically correct with no additional buttons, switches or controls. Complimenting the interior visual impact is a dynamic audio system specifically designed for optimal performance within the passenger space.
In a final salutation to the original, each Milivié is accompanied by a bespoke Bill Amberg-designed luggage piece reflecting the interior design of the commission. This has a dedicated set-in placement within the rear firewall mimicking the OEM luggage compartment behind the rear bench.