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Volkswagen challenges students to create video-game cars

The automotive and video-game industries have become integrated to the point that carmakers are actually designing concept vehicles that will never turn a wheel in the real world.

Volkswagen is the latest to follow this trend, but with a new twist.

The German automaker’s latest design contest encourages students to “create a cool video game car for Volkswagen!”

To fulfill that unambiguous brief, students have until August 15 to create their cars and a video-game scenario for them to inhabitant. Students can work individually or in teams, and VW only asks that “the typical character of a Volkswagen should at least be somewhat recognizable.”

So… no banana peel launcher then?

The contest will be judged by Volkswagen design chief Klaus Bischoff. Full details can be found at volkswagen-design-contest.com.

Volkswagen held its first student design contest in 2011, when it asked Russian, Indian, and Chinese students to design electric cars. The company hopes these contests will help find talented designers, and maintain relationships with international universities and design academies.

These days, even professional designers are playing video games.

Last fall, the Mercedes-Benz AMG Vision Gran Turismo was unveiled to coincide with the launch of Gran Turismo 6 and the 15th anniversary of that racing-game franchise.

The Vision Gran Turismo features a sleek design unrestricted by packaging or crash-test concerns, and will be available to play in the game.

World Champion Formula One team Infiniti Red Bull Racing has also collaborated with the Gran Turismo folks on several fantasy racers, including the swoopy X2014.

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