The museum is currently closed for major renovations.
Please check back at a later date for our reopening time.

People Movers

The Museum of Automobile History is proud to announce a special exhibition
on the electric automobile, "People Movers", featuring models and designs produced by industrial design students at Syracuse University. Their projects, directed by Jerome Malinowski (SU design professor and automobile designer) will be on display from 6:00 pm Friday, October 17 to Friday, November 21, 1997.

This exhibition's opening will feature a videotaped interview with Professor Malinowski, in which he discusses both the project, and his own history with the automotive industry.

The museum plans many exhibitions this year and next as a part of their pledge to further demonstrate Syracuse's past and ongoing role in the automotive industry; as well as to highlight the achievements of local designers and artists.

Professor Jerome Malinowski on "People Movers"

The automobile has evolved as one of the most complex and expensivee consumer products. More moneys and energies have been expended in the design of the appearance of this product than any other consumer good. One must question the social responsibility of academics and the corporate world when considering the present size, weight, and fuel efficiency of contemporary vehicles. While there is an attempt to mitigate this direction by a few manufacturers, the majority of vehicles offered to the consumer fail to provide the user with an affordable, fuel efficient, and ergonomically correct product.

The domestic manufacturers' marginal focus on product recyclability material further aggravates the environmental condition. Some corporations are beginning to provide affordable, light-weight, fuel efficient vehicles to meet basic human transportation needs, i.e., Mercedes Benz, Chrysler. Is it too little too late? This past semester, I charged my students with the assignment of designing a socially responsible automobile. The students' research will be exhibited at the Museum of Automobile History and will include drawings and models of their designs.

Professor Jerome J. Malinowski: Industrial Design, Department of Design, College of Visual & performing Arts, Syracuse University, 334 Smith Hall, Syracuse, NY 13244-1180, (315) 443-2455.

A close up of the interior of one of the models showing the detailed work involved in its creation. Some of the electric automobile designs, each set gives the viewer a glimpse into the design process behind the models. The exhibition as it appears in the museum

A few thoughts to consider, why do you suppose that the major automobile manufacturers have little interest in creating electric automobiles? Did environmental concerns and fuel economy influence your own automobile purchase, or were you more interested in dependability, styling, or other concerns?

Students Involved: Clint Cope*, Rob Miller*, Phil Saulnier*, Chris D' Aquila,
Dan Hobson, Jon Polhamus, Heather Reavey, Banning Rowles, Matt Topper, Hauro Yamada.
* indicates Student Organizers.


This show is a culmination of a year's research and design by a group of Syracuse University industrial design students. In May of 1997, we traveled with Professor Jerome Malinowski to Detroit, Michigan to present our work at the United Next Generation Vehicle Conference at the Renaissance Center. This show will display concept models, space models, interior models, renderings, sketches and displays from Detroit that illustrate the design process.

Food for Thought. . .

Do you feel that the recent trend towards larger, less fuel efficient vehicles is truly just indicative of consumer desires? Would you ever consider purchasing an electric vehicle? If so, what might be one of the most important considerations you would have? Feedback, comments and questions are welcome at

copyright Museum of Automobile History, Syracuse, NY