Published on June 14th, 2023 | by Subhash Nair


DS Automobiles Hints At Future Of Cabin Design With M.i. 21 ‘Manifesto’

DS Automobiles is determined to show a French side of premium in-car cabin design with the M.i. 21.

DS Automobiles, the premium offshoot of Citroen, has kind of fallen under the radar since the Stellantis merger. The last big announcement was that it was going full EV. That being said, they’ve evidently got something big planned, at least in terms of interior design. The brand’s design studio has just shown their ‘M.i. 21’ research media that it says illustrates the vision for their future car interiors.

It’s difficult to say at this point which aspects will make it to production as this is the sort of stuff that usually is kept behind closed doors. This is the kind of thing car designers use to bring ideas to life and to inspired more ideas. It also gives designers a way to communicate what’s possible to senior management, who will ultimately decide what’s worth taking into production. It’s so raw that even safety regulations and production limitations are not factored in.


That being said, it’s not all nutty shapes on display. There are some interesting colours, materials, concepts and human-machine interfaces that we think will probably be identifiable in an upcoming DS model. The M.i. 21 manifesto was on display at the at the Révélations exhibition at the Grand Palais Ephémère in Paris. Here’s what it includes:

Light: Illumination

Light plays a vital role in creating a pleasant atmosphere in the cockpit. Whether it is employed directly or indirectly to add a sense of airiness to the features and introduce a fresh perspective to the materials, it becomes a significant factor in enhancing the sensory experience within the car. The circular elements found on the doors are transformed into radiant rings, elevating the displayed materials through the use of light.

Volumes: Expansive Space

In contrast, the design architecture offers a greater sense of roominess. By elevating the dashboard and shifting it forward, space is effectively freed up. The absence of a central tunnel or center console, coupled with increased glass surfaces, results in a more spacious, liberating, and tranquil interior environment. The storage solutions draw inspiration from the world of furniture, striking a delicate balance between materials, tactile sensations, and volume distribution to evoke a profound feeling of well-being.

Sound: Auditory Experience

During a journey, sound serves as a means to escape and contributes to the aesthetic arrangement of the cockpit. It also reflects the acoustic excellence found in DS Automobiles’ interiors. Sound becomes an integral part of the overall experience, capable of amplifying the journey or fading into the background to create an air of opulence. By reconsidering the conventional approach to sound system components, the focus shifts towards maximizing space and mass. The work showcased in the manifesto not only provides visual gratification but also aligns harmoniously with a smooth and refined style. All sound-related elements converge into a central feature, becoming an iconic object through its design, position in the cabin, and the accompanying lighting.

Immersion: Redefined Human-Machine Interaction

The relationship between humans and machines has been completely reimagined. With the unveiling of the DS AERO SPORT LOUNGE in 2020, the exploration of interior spaces with less intrusive and more enchanting interfaces had already begun. Information was projected onto cotton satin, eliminating the need for screens to reduce mental overload and the redundancy of information. While many manufacturers are engaged in a competition to increase screen size and quantity, the manifesto seeks to find technology that delivers the desired information without compromising on quality and sensory appeal. The M.i. 21 manifesto introduces an innovative solution: projecting information onto a strip that can switch between opaque and transparent states, revealing or concealing materials. The only screen concessions are located in the doors and are exclusively dedicated to the rearview camera function. Voice commands or a central armrest-based remote control system govern the entire system.

future DS Automobiles interior m.i.21 manifesto

The Artistic Dimension: Elevated Customization

One of the primary goals of the M.i. 21 manifesto is to push the boundaries of bespoke offerings by incorporating genuine works of art. Each individual can personalize their experience to align with their unique taste. The inclusion of artistic expression elevates the entire concept to new heights. The absence of speakers creates additional space within the doors, which is then repurposed to reimagine storage solutions and redefine a larger area dedicated to showcasing expertise and artistic expression. This unprecedented realm of artistic expression is exemplified by the circles, representing perfect geometry and a source of reassurance. They serve to accentuate and distinguish the cockpit, featuring a distinctive and visually striking graphic design.

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