A few days ago Paul posted a vintage ad for the Kanzler Coupe, a modification (dare I say mutilation?) of the Opel GT. “Even AI couldn’t have come up with this,” he suggested.
Probably not. But that won’t stop me from trying!
The funny thing about the AI is that you can’t just ask for an ugly car. I learned pretty quickly that to the AI “ugly car” means “dirty car.” So instead I had to feed it reference images of different cars known for their unusual looks. Neo-classic designs from Stutz, Zimmer and Excalibur, the AMC Matador and Pacer, a Stout Scarab, the 1957 Aurora, and the odd concept car.
Some of the results were unattractive, but tame. But I did accidently get that triangular grille I wanted when I first started generating AI cars.
Also, I totally let the AI’s headlight freak flag fly.
A lot of the images got cut-down doors and weird arrangements of headlights as it tried to Frankenstein together the concepts of an Excalibur and a sleek sports car. I had to discard most of the results as the AI tried to reconcile the differing geometries of aerodynamic and neo-classic cars, resulting in impossible, Escher-style front ends.
Some of the results were almost attractive, as long as ignore the nutant limousine in the background.
But wait! We’re trying to make ugly cars. Here you go! I think this one might give the Kanzler a run for its money.
This is also a “favorite” of mine, mostly because of the funky fender-top openings. I wonder how that would work on snowy or slushy roads.
I didn’t feed the AI any Corvette images, but clearly it thinks that “sports car” means “Corvette.”
There were lots of variations on the “cut-down doors and lots-of-headlights” theme.
That’s an odd arrangement of headlights (pun intended). I used a often bright red Bufori Geneva as reference image. Instead of incorporating it into the car design, the AI liked to photobomb big red cars and trucks in the background, like that SUV with the oddly Jaguar-ish tail.
The AI liked to add little fender-mounted lights.
This one is nice, like a Citröen from an alternate universe.
Police spec? Impractical taxi? Is that a light box on top or a pizza warmer?
It’s not horrible, but that opening behind the wheel is uncomfortable.
Welcome to the Ugly Zone.
Smile for the camera!
You can see a lot of the 1957 Aurora in this one. It’s kind of interesting how it took that design and toned it down to make something thar isn’t all that attractive, but isn’t nausea-inducing, either.
If you don’t look ahead of the front wheels it’s kind of attractive.
Are any of these worse than the Kanzler? I don’t know, but it was fun trying. Honestly, half of the horror of the Kanzler was how it ruined an attractive car.
Maybe the problem is that real designers make horrible cars when they’re trying for beautiful with no holds barred. Exner’s asymmetrical ’62s, and Brooks Stevens’s Gaylord, were supposed to be beautiful. Timeless beauty happens when a designer is tightly constrained, like Stevens’s Willys wagons.
It seems to have gotten a couple “70s CUV” in the background that I think are interesting
I like the mutant limo! Would love to see the rest of it.
Are any of these worse than the Kanzler?
No; they’re all better! Why? because they made me laugh out loud, whereas the Kanzler made me cringe.
These are all wonderful; I feel like I’ve been transported to a Star Trek episode on a planet where there’s a car show going on in the street.
I fully appreciate the limitations of AI as in chatbots and such, but in this application, it is splendid. It so wants to please, and tries a bit too hard. But it lacks a few key elements that are necessary, at least yet. But it’s sure giving me a whole lot of amusement; it’s the best laughing session I’ve had in a while, and I really needed one.
Thanks for taking on the challenge.
I think the mutant limo, or at least the general concept of it, would be either
a: the solution for potentates who are suspicious that the driver is listening, even with the divider window.
b: the natural evolution of the rumble seat
c: a new concept in motoring – the mother-in-law cabin
There is one guy who might like that mutant limo.
I’m actually surprised that chrome trimmed wood panelled 5mph bumpers were never a thing in real life.
What’s on top of the front fenders, toilet seats?
His & her squat toilets.
Smokestacks. It’s coal powered.
Some scary stuff there!
Be careful you don’t tell the AI that you don’t like its car designs. I have been hearing stories on the radio that some AI chatbot systems start threatening the user if you say something the AI finds offensive to it.
This one “ If you don’t look ahead of the front wheels it’s kind of attractive” has a bit of a DeTomaso Mangusta look.
In the picture of the car that the author compares to a 1957 Aurora, there’s a man with a horse’s leg in place of his right leg. Shades of Dr. Moreau! That’s the craziest thing to me. These AI cars are certainly odd-looking, but not nearly as ugly as that poor, butchered Opel .
Thanks for that observation (about the man with the horse leg). You’re absolutely correct, and this simply underscores the fact that one can’t look at these AI things very closely – particularly the backgrounds – without encountering many head-exploding moments. Apparently in the future, we’re all going to have oddly long and wavy forearms that appear to have sprouted from arms that are on the same side of our bodies or sometimes springing from our chests.
It all just seems to me to be something generated by aliens. And that may not be a good thing.
Check out the Dachshund-Horse mix.
Yep. The scary thing is that tens of thousands of years in the future, this image will be considered to be one of many accurate representations of what horses really looked like. And depending on just how many of these AI images exist it will be given equal weight to legit images of horses.
Not that this will be of concern to me at that time.
That’s the lwb four passenger version!
Looks like AI is pretty familiar with the Mustang, but it got a few details wrong, in that predictable AI fashion. The passenger side window is from a fastback, and the horse logo on the grille has mutated even more than the horse by the barn. And there’s a few others.
What did you do to get this?Just ask for a ’65 Mustang?
Pretty much. I haven’t had much success with imaginary 1975 Hawks, so I went back to square one and asked for a 1963 Gran Turismo Hawk to get a sense of what the AI thought a Hawk was (see below, not very accurate results). Then I used the same parameters but for a 1965 Mustang. For famous cars it can give you something recognizable, even if the details are off.
Odd, it didn’t attach the picture. Trying again.
In enlarging the photo, it appears he has 2 front horse legs, his own left leg, and there is a dark tan post between his legs.
The man all the way to the left appears to have more than 2 legs.
Artificial Inteligence: Definitions from Oxford Languages . . .
Artificial: 1. made by human work or art, not by nature; not natural. 2. made in imitation of or as a substitute for something natural; simulated. artificial teeth.
Intelligence: 1.The ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills.
Not sure these photos quite meet the definition of Arificial Intelligence!
Nice try but BMW,Lexus,Honda have you beaten so far.
I kept thinking “Corvette Summer” as I was looking at these pictures.
What happened? Did AI go on an ugly stick binge today??