With Epic Games’ Unreal Engine software, clients can see their custom-restored build long before it rolls off the assembly line
E.C.D. Automotive Design
KISSIMMEE, Fla., March 08, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — E.C.D. Automotive Design (E.C.D.) today introduces its latest groundbreaking innovation in its bespoke luxury car design process. Positioning itself on the cutting edge of virtual trends within the automotive industry, E.C.D. now crafts a photorealistic design video of each client’s unique custom build, allowing them to visualize their dream car months ahead of completion. Created with 3D creation tool Unreal Engine by Epic Games, the lifelike animation with dynamic physics and lighting effects looks like something out of a film or video game. Click HERE to view a 3D design video of a custom Defender build.
E.C.D. is the world’s largest Land Rover restoration company specializing in customizing 25-year-old vintage Defenders and classic Range Rovers into modernized luxury vehicles that celebrate the creativity and style of each client while preserving the beloved rugged charm of traditional Land Rovers. Each E.C.D. vehicle is an individually crafted artwork, rebuilt in-house from the chassis and up and personalized down to the seat stitching so that no two on the road are ever the same.
E.C.D. offers an infinite range of custom features for its clientele to choose from. After selecting from E.C.D.’s range of classic Land Rover models – be it a Defender 90, Defender 110, Defender 130, Series IIA or a Range Rover Classic – clients make further customizations from body style to paint to tire and wheel specifications and much more, along with a long list of accessory options such as grilles, roll cages and winches to name a few. Most notably, clients can select from up to nine different drivetrain solutions – including a 450 HP Tesla electric motor. For the interior, clients also select the seat configuration and style, audio and infotainment systems, and have a wide selection of leather and stitching colors to create something truly individual.
Once clients finalize their personalized design, a 3D model of the car is digitally rendered with a variety of programs and powered by Unreal Engine. A design video is then created with the model, teasing the upcoming build. The cinematic video includes pans of the exterior, shots of the interior and graphical callouts that point out key features of the personalized build. High fidelity textures, accurate lighting and dynamic shadows make it look both stunning and immersive. As one of the most popular software frameworks in the gaming industry, Unreal Engine was used for well-known titles like Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy – The Definitive Edition and Fortnite. Unreal Engine is also widely used in film and television with Academy Award-winning Ford v Ferrari and Disney’s The Mandalorian all implementing it as a CGI tool.
“It’s crazy powerful software that places E.C.D. at the forefront of automotive design and ahead of the curve when compared to other boutique car builders,” said Tyler Godby, 3D artist and developer for E.C.D. “With Unreal Engine, the visual fidelity has increased exponentially. Everything from the way the light shines to the reflections in the glass contribute to making the videos look realistic and not something out of an old video game.”
Godby has been doing 3D modeling and design both as a hobby and professionally for over 20 years. Since joining E.C.D., he has spearheaded improvements to E.C.D.’s proprietary 3D rendering software and rolled out the implementation of Unreal Engine for the design videos. Godby uses a custom-built PC with an Intel processor and Nvidia 3070 card – equipment typical of game developers – for his design videos.
Soon to come are more detailed, realistic environments and weather effects that will only enhance E.C.D.’s one-to-one experience. For example, if a client is based in Colorado, the design video will feature their restored Defender with a photorealistic mountain background. Drifting snow will pile on the hood of their vehicle, simulating how the vehicle will look in everyday life. The 3D model can even be incorporated into a photo background, seamlessly inserted into a picture of the client’s driveway next to current vehicles.
“The possibilities truly are endless with this technology, and it’ll only enhance the service that we offer to our clients,” said E.C.D. Co-Founder Scott Wallace. “We plan to use the engine to create an interactive online configurator that clients can play with. They can zoom in and out and make any updates to their build in-real time, tweaking the paint color, the seat leather type and more with just a few clicks.”
Additionally, E.C.D. hopes to use Unreal Engine to create a virtual reality (VR) experience for its clientele. With a VR headset and controllers, clients can check out the interior of their custom build, and much like the online configurator, switch out different pieces, like seats, finishes and furnishings instantaneously. For more information on how to build your own vehicle, please visit ecdautodesign.com.
About E.C.D. Automotive Design
E.C.D. Automotive Design (E.C.D.) is a creator of restored luxury vehicles that combines classic English beauty with modern performance. Each vehicle produced by E.C.D. is fully bespoke, a one-off that is designed by the client through an immersive luxury design experience and hand-built from the ground up in 2,200 hours by master-certified ASE craftsmen. The company was founded in 2013 by three British “petrol heads” whose passion for classic vehicles is the driving force behind exceptionally high standards for quality, custom luxury vehicles. E.C.D.’s global headquarters, known as the “Rover Dome,” is a 45,000 square-foot facility located in Kissimmee, Florida that is home to 60 talented craftsman and technicians, who hold a combined 61 ASE and five master level certifications. E.C.D. has a logistics center in the U.K. that sources and transports 25-year-old work vehicles back to the U.S. for restoration.
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