Tangent together with iconic performance manufacturer Shelby and Elkhart based premium truck up-fitter Tuscany Motor Co., teamed up to design & develop the 2021 Shelby F-150, Shelby’s latest foray into the performance truck market. Tangent’s responsibilities included the design and development of numerous proprietary parts, including an injection molded grille, fender vent, new front bumper, a steel hood with vent inserts and a new tonneau cover, just to name a few.
Tangent began the development process with a combination of 2D sketching, and VRED based underlays of the new Ford F-150, to ensure that every sketched detail and component would accurately reflect its real-life counterpart.
Inspired by Shelby’s rich racing and performance heritage, as well as previous collaborations between Tangent and Shelby, Tangent set about designing a new Shelby F-150 that would stand out in an increasingly crowded performance truck market. This meant taking a more radical design approach to the Shelby’s numerous bespoke parts, incorporating more advanced and robust production techniques, and considering the performance aspect of every new design feature.
After settling on a 2D direction, Tangent set about modeling the Shelby’s numerous injection molded parts in 3D CAD software, bringing the design from concept level surfaces, all the way to tool ready parts. This process included the development of a new, multidimensional grille mesh, that underwent significant development from 2D Illustrator vector patterns to detailed cut away sketches, all the way to a final, injection mold ready part.
Without the support of a full-size clay model to evaluate surfaces, Tangent turned to it’s in house, VRED powered, virtual reality set up to create a full-scale walk-through environment, which provided Tangent with critical insights into the design and scale of each of the Shelby F-150’s numerous exterior upgrades.
Utilizing VRED’s powerful rendering software, Tangent was able to visualize the Shelby F-150 in real time, generating photo real images for marketing materials and client reviews, ensuring that every image would be of a consistent quality and accuracy for client evaluations and design discussions.
The 2021 Shelby F-150 will make its debut in July and is limited to only 600 models.