MAIN Event 20, NAIAS to feature LTU talent

DETROIT — MAIN Event 20, the seventh annual celebration of design that kicks off the North American International Auto Show, will have a distinctly Lawrence Technological University vibe when it takes place Sunday, Jan. 8 at the Max M. Fisher Music Center in midtown Detroit.

Keith Nagara, director of LTU’s transportation design program, is executive chairman of the event. And Lawrence Technological University students will display their visions of the future of mobility at the event — and at NAIAS, which opens for Press Preview Days on Monday, Jan. 9.

Students like Andreas Bastidas, a sophomore in automotive design from Colombia, who envisioned a futuristic race car to compete in the 24 Hours of LeMans race in the year 2030.

Bastidas’ dream design, which was entered in the NAIAS Michelin Design Challenge, isn’t powered by anything as mundane as gasoline or even electricity. Instead, he envisioned a propulsion system based on Star Trek’s warp drive. In his concept, electromagnetic pulses increase the size of air molecules behind the car, pushing it, and decrease the size of air molecules ahead of the car, pulling it.

A model of the car will be on display at the MAIN Event – and during the NAIAS press preview Jan. 9-10, Industry Preview Days Jan. 11-12, and the public show Jan. 14-22, at the Lawrence Tech exhibit in the main concourse of Cobo Center.

LTU student work will also be part of a 3D virtual reality display at the MAIN Event. Featured will be transportation design, industrial design, and engineering student projects. Providing the technology for the VR system are industry partners 3DXCITE and Dassault Systèmes. Also, auto supplier and MAIN Event sponsor Magna will showcase an LTU design project and announce scholarship winners, and Ford Motor Co. will release the results of Designing for the Future, a student design competition.


The MAIN Event will also see the presentation of auto industry awards, and will conclude with a fashion show featuring Michigan-based designers. The event runs from 6 to 10 p.m.


Credentialed media are invited to attend the MAIN Event free. For registration, visit

Lawrence Technological University,, is a private university founded in 1932 that offers more than 100 programs through the doctoral level in its Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Engineering, and Management. PayScale lists Lawrence Tech among the nation’s top 100 universities for the salaries of its graduates, and U.S. News and World Report lists it in the top tier of best Midwestern universities. Students benefit from small class sizes and a real-world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 107-acre campus include more than 60 student organizations and NAIA varsity sports.

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