top of page

Series: Car Design Schools Have Changed So Should You!

Updated: Aug 22, 2020

Going By the times we are in right now, it's safe to say future scenarios in many areas including Design Education are not going to be the same as we were accustomed to.

Even before pandemic hit the people, Design Schools were already diversifying the programs and were branching out into other areas of Transportation Design. The Major reason for this to offer a relevant program and essential design thinking for changing times.

With a lot of new Design Schools Popping up everywhere catering to traditional car design education, it made sense for established Design Schools to move on to the next phase of educating a new generation of designers to tackle new-age problems.

We got in touch with some of our young Designers to understand their experiences & what goes into Design education at their respective design Schools and how it has shaped their Design Thinking to see the Car Design in the new light.

We are going to cover these experiences shared by various Design students in the coming weeks. This should serve as an informative series for Industry & Students who are looking forward to choosing Car Design Education. As well as Industry Experts who are looking for fresh Perspective in Automotive Design.


Strate Ecole de Design, Paris

Hello everyone,

I am Komal.G, from Bangalore but roots down to Vijayawada AP. I completed my Bachelors in Transportation design at DSK ISD, Pune after my 12th and currently

studying in 5th year of Mobility design at Strate Ecole de Design, Paris, and a soon to be graduate.

The drive to be a transportation designer was ever since I was a kid as little as 7 years old and was the only thing I dreamt about and even had no backup choice for my career apart from being a transportation designer.

I had given only one entrance test at ISD, Pune post 12th, while friends were attending an endless list of exams for medical and engineering colleges.

Q1: Tell about us your design college, its legacy, values, and motto?

Strate Ecole de Design is a French Design school, founded in 1993 and offers courses like Mobility Design, Smart-City Design, 3D Modelling.

They are stalled strongly in Paris being a French design school but have a campus in Singapore, Lyon, and most recently in Bangalore, India as well.

The school is famously known for its alumni who are now celebrity designers in the auto industry to name a few Sandeep Bhambra ( Senior exterior designer, Peugeot), Matthis Hossann ( Head of Peugeot Design), Sydney Hardy (Exterior Designer, Audi) and the list goes on.

Strate mainly focuses on mobility design, compared to traditional car design thought in other transportation design colleges. The idea is to focus mainly on storytelling and functionality rather than pure aesthetics.

Even if the end product is a glass box but as long as it's justified why and how of course along with transportation clues is what strat is known for and stands for in the industry.

Q2: What are the requirements for getting into your design college? Please explain to us in short about the process of application, scholarships, selection criteria, student visa, and any particular difficulty you faced during the entire process?

the school offers only a master's degree program which is taught in English. To get in a student needs to have a strong bachelor's degree portfolio followed by a personal interview and no scholarship program is offered.

The process for student visa students is pretty smooth. One can hire an agent who would help you with the admission process extract followed by the visa process and also helps with finding a residence.

Q3: What makes your college an ideal place for studying design?

France is known for being the birthplace for design and luxury as we all know and what other better place could I choose. The biggest advantage of Strate is it is very close to Renault Technocentre and PSA design studio. The campus has designers coming regularly to conduct Masterclasses and provides a great opportunity for students to meet and work with designers they usually adore over social media.

To name some of my best experiences of my 4th-year Masterclasses were mentored by Vincent Turpin (Designer of Renault Symbioz), Yang Cai (Ex Designer at Peugeot), Christoph Sokol (Interior Designer of Peugeot E-Legend) and many more.

Also got to work over collaboration projects in the 5th year by working alongside Honda, Japan, and DS Automobiles, Paris.

The design process and work culture are very drastic and unique compared to the style here in India. The culture focuses mainly on the storytelling of the product and the meaning behind it over aesthetics compared to other automotive design colleges.

The creative process picked up over my time there was to start by creating PS collages by mashing different images for an Avant-Garde approach, followed by doodles and then to 3D. This method gives an edge compared to traditional hand sketches to ideate when doing a quick project.

The designers from Strate are usually known to be very unique with the storytelling and with their projects since the college focuses heavily on mobilities with the purpose of the society.

For instance, it could be a glass box on four wheels but if it's justified with why and how people buy it ! the reason being in today's world with changing times, shared mobility e.g. has become a need for people to commute from A to b and not a desire to own unlike before.

As a result, the benefit of studying at Strate gives you an edge of being able to think beyond aesthetics and focusing primarily on the function and purpose a vehicle would serve rather than just being eye candy.

Q5: Which design course taught in the college had an impact on your thought process?

The masterclasses by designers had the most impact on my learning and thought process over my time at Strate. the ability to photo mash images from Pinterest on Photoshop and gives you a whole new dimension of being able to think outside the box and generate fresh ideas for projects, which is evident if you've been following my work in the recent times.

Q6: If given the chance to design your college curriculum, what would you like to change or add?

The curriculum requires you to write a thesis of about one lakh characters over almost a year which personally can be intimidating for someone who is a design student since we tend to be in a mindset of wanting to design always.

It is a good curriculum however on a personal note I wish I could reduce the period of the time allotted to write the thesis and add the time to squeeze in another short project.

Q7: What qualities do you think are required to become a good design student?

The ability to have good hand sketching skills at least in the early days of your time at a design school followed by being able to have your unique style of renders and sketches to stand out in this ever-growing design world.

Going Forward qualities that are required to become a good design student are to have an open and a curious mind to soak in all the information, not just concerning cars but also what's products, current affairs, technology, and latest trends to stay updated to think out of the box to help make a project.

Q8: Any word of advice or personal story you would like to share for young aspiring designers?

A small piece of advice would be to stay consistent throughout the process and not get bored when working over a project over a long period and to take constructive criticism with a pinch of salt and acceptance to push for the better.

-Design Odyssey


342 views2 comments

Recent Posts

See All


Komal Gvn
Komal Gvn
Aug 22, 2020

Hey Amol, to answer your question, apart from the standard design courses like sketching, 3D modelling etc. Strate also invests beyond the program like the following : • Smart City Planning • Anthropology & Ethnography • Traditional Art Courses • Out of Box thinking courses • Language Courses - French I hope that helps :)


Amol Satpute
Amol Satpute
Aug 21, 2020

If you could elaborate more on the various subjects taught at Strate alongside Car Design, which assist in problem solving, it'd be great @Komal thx

Post: Blog2 Post
bottom of page