Comparing the original design...
Comparing the original design rendering (previous page) to the finished vehicle, one can see several differences in the details. For example, the hoodscoops on the completed Rev are actually larger and more rounded than originally designed. Similarly, the roof rack is larger, as are the door handles.
The rear of the Rev concept...
The rear of the Rev concept shows its Pro Rally roots with a tall stance and centrally located exhaust outlets. Taillamps were integrated into the rear wing.
Its interior is pure concept-car...
Its interior is pure concept-car high-tech, with carbon-fiber seat frames upholstered with Lycra-covered gel padding. Four Motorola TalkAbout radios keep passengers "connected" while out exploring.
As the 21st century dawned on Detroit, the push to explore new types of crossover vehicles was well underway. Finding unique ways to blur the traditional boundaries between coupe, sedan, truck, and SUV provided designers with a broad canvas to express themselves and "invent" new types of vehicles and, hopefully, new market segments.
For 2001, Pontiac explored the leading edge of vehicle design with the Rev, a combination of sport-utility vehicle and high-performance rally coupe. With its full-time, all-wheel-drive, on-the-fly-adjustable suspension and powerful V-6 engine, the Rev brought high-performance capability to any situation, on or off-road.
In essence, the Rev's active lifestyle concept was sort of a sequel to the '89 Stinger, molded and adapted for a new generation of buyers with the same kind of athletic interests and needs.
"Rev's look is that of high-tech sporting goods-fenders and rocker panels are made from ultra-tough composite material that extends into the wheelwells, under the hood, and to the deck lid," says Adam Berry, lead designer of the show car, who at the time was just 24 years old. "Interior and exterior are truly integrated through shared materials."
The fact that Pontiac gave this huge responsibility to such a young designer showed a new mindset at the typically hierarchical Design Studios. What better way to appeal to young buyers than to enlist the talents of a capable designer who is actually a member of the target market demographic?
Overall, the Rev was a fairly significant departure from previous Pontiac designs, offering the ground clearance of an SUV, but still maintaining an overall height in keeping with a performance-oriented vehicle. Unlike the Stinger, the Rev was a closed design-a four-door with a coupe-like fastback profile.
Bringing the familiar Pontiac design icons meant new challenges for Berry and his staff. Traditional Pontiac cat's-eye headlamps were made smaller than usual, which presented some problems. The team's solution opened new possibilities for the future-the light sources were placed at a 90-degree angle in the engine compartment. Each light beam was reflected outward by mirrors, which respond to steering input and thus provide optimal light on the road, even in turns. In effect, the headlamps turned with the steering wheel.
The Pontiac V-shaped grille was also smaller in size, as were the Ram Air hoodscoops on the reverse-opening hood. Additionally, the absence of lower body cladding was possible with the durable composite fender and rocker panels, providing a cleaner and more athletic look. The loss of the body cladding was an indication there was a shift in mindset at Pontiac, much the same way the Silver Streaks were removed in 1957. Though it didn't happen right away, the gimmicky design cue was eventually dropped in production Pontiac models as well.