Saleen 1

To high-performance car enthusiasts, the Saleen Automotive name needs little introduction. Founded in 1983 by Steve Saleen, the company made its debut as a specialty vehicle manufacturer with the 1984 Saleen Mustang and has set the bar for performance ever since with the Saleen Signature line, built on existing vehicle platforms. In 2000, the company famously unveiled the Saleen S7 as the first production American supercar and the first in the line of Saleen Original vehicles designed and produced entirely by Saleen. With the need for a true “Driver’s Car” that offered supercar-level performance and engineering at a more accessible price point, Saleen Automotive began development of the Saleen 1 (S1) – an all-original lightweight, midengined sports car.

Working closely with input from Hydra Design Labs as a design consultant and specialist for both the exterior and interior of the new sports car, Steve Saleen led the overall design process for the S1 and officially unveiled the car at the L.A. Auto Show in 2017,  marking an entirely new era for the California-based company. Featuring a lightweight aluminum chassis with composite carbon fiber body and independent suspension, plus a Saleen-designed turbocharged. inline 4-cylinder engine, the S1 produces 450 horsepower and weighs only 2,685 pounds – ranking it among the top supercar performance levels. Production of the Saleen S1 will begin in 2020.


Saleen Cup / GT4

As a brand with a rich legacy of professional racing it was no surprise that Saleen Automotive chose to debut its new Saleen 1 sports car on the racetrack before the innovative new midengined model was officially available as a street vehicle. The result was the Saleen Cup Racing Series in 2019 – a true “arrive and drive” series that offered prospective racing drivers the opportunity to compete in the new Saleen 1 on some of the most iconic racetracks in North America. The Saleen Cup provided drivers with a professional quality racing experience, including 20 fully prepared S1 “Cup Cars,” which were maintained by Saleen and transported to each event.


DM Blade

Divergent Microfactories (DM) Blade is the world’s first 3D printed supercar. Aimed at revolutionizing the way that cars are designed and produced, the DM Blade is an ultra-lightweight vehicle that utilizes cutting-edge technology to minimize both the cost and environmental impact of manufacturing cars. DM’s new technology centers around 3D printed metal nodes and carbon fiber tubes that create a chassis that is up to 90% lighter than traditional cars, while also being much stronger and more durable. The DM Blade also dramatically reduces material and energy use, reducing the carbon footprint caused by manufacturing processes. When looking at total emissions of a vehicle, including those from manufacturing,  the DM Blade has one third of the environmental impact of any other electric car –  it also happens to go 0-60 in about two seconds, boasts 700 horsepower and has twice the power-to-weight ratio of a Bugatti Veyron.

Along with CRD and Motivo Engineering, Hydra Design Labs was part of the team that built the Blade Supercar. Hydra was responsible for all of the exterior and interior 3D data, and assisted with design details of the vehicle. As part of the development team for the DM Blade, Hydra Design Labs was also responsible for making all of the rapid prototypes for the vehicle, 60 in total.


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Hydra Supercar

When we’re not busy designing and creating the world’s next passenger vehicle, heavy-duty truck, sports car, or supercar for some of the top automotive OEMs, we’re working on our own internal design ideas with the Hydra Supercar. Conceived by the principal designers at Hydra and born out of our passion for pushing the boundaries of automotive design, the Hydra Supercar explores the possibilities of a modern front-engine hypercar. Through a series of detailed sketches and digital illustrations, the Hydra Supercar combines our progressive design thinking with the best practices and practical lessons learned from decades of experience designing for automotive OEMs


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Hot Rods

This is a selection of Hot Rod sketches designed by Gary Ragle and Mike Desmond

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Northrop Grumman GMV

As one of the world’s largest manufacturers of military and defense equipment with an impressive resume ranging from the B-2 Stealth Bomber to the Apollo Lunar Module and Cignus spacecraft, Northrupp Grumman is one of the most high-profile companies in the United States.

One of the most iconic U.S. military vehicles is the Ground Mobility Vehicle (GMV), which were a U.S. Special Operations Command program that traditionally used converted Humvees into specialty vehicles used by U.S. Army Rangers, Navy SEALs, and Air Force and Marine Corps special operations and more. In 2012, the U.S. Special Operations Command requested proposals for an all-new GMV that would be lighter and faster than the old vehicle, with updated communications and computing equipment. Northrop Grumman was among the top firms submitting a proposed new design for the “GMV 1.1” project, and the company came to Hydra Design Labs for its design expertise and Class A surfacing capabilities.

Working closely  with Northrop Grumman, BAE, and Pratt & Miller Engineering on this program, Hydra was responsible for designing the exterior of the GMV and providing Class A surfacing for the final vehicle – all while working with tight time and engineering constraints throughout the project.

“We contracted with Jon and his team at Hydra Design Labs to design the exterior for our tactical vehicle submission to Special Operations Command. We gave him a very a challenging set of constraints, not enough time, and not enough resources to do the job, and he and his team still delivered, exceeding our expectations on every front. He’s our go-to guy for vehicle designs in the future.”

– Bob Mohan, Northrop Grumman project manager

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