Think of it as the ghost of BMWs past and present. It's called GINA, for "Geometry and Functions in 'N' Adaptions," and it's a concept car that's been behind the scenes at the German automaker's styling studios for six years, helping designers play with the unique flame surfacing that's been integral to the latest generation of sporty cars from Munich.
Unlike any concept car I can remember, the GINA's structure of metal ribs is covered in fabric. Not only does its glider-like construction let stylists play with shapes and openings such as headlamps and air intakes, as you can see in the photo set here, BMW says it also opens up some very fundamental questions about car design--including the tantalizing prospect of tailoring a vehicle's shape to a specific owner--or to cloaking some vehicle functions like headlamps when they're not in use.
BMW also points out that the GINA concept give the company insights into how to "work with less raw material and energy."
Since it was designed as an in-house tool, there's no plan to display the GINA on the world auto-show circuit. However, given its role in developing BMW's current range of cars, it will take a place in the newly expanded BMW museum in Munich.