Preference-oriented form design: application to cars’ headlights

Original Paper


The integration of customer preferences is nowadays a challenge in new product development. In this paper, we describe a method which integrates the customer preferences for the design of geometrical forms. We illustrate the approach by the design of a car’s headlight. From a product space, the method is based on the definition of a perceptual space, built by multidimensional scaling, and which lead to the definition of interpretable perceptual dimensions. Objective measures of the form, computed from the design variables of the design model, are selected to interpret the perceptual dimensions. These measures are representative of the overall form and of the curvature variations. At this level, the Fourier coefficients of a closed curve are used to represent the information on the curvature variations. Next, from the preferences of a customer, the target values of the selected measures corresponding to a preference optimum are calculated. We show in the paper the interest of this approach for the design of forms. The method is illustrated by the design of a car’s headlight, modeled by Bezier curves and integrated in a front-end.


Customer centered design Perceptual space Multidimensional scaling Preference modeling Form design Fourier coefficients 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.IRCCyN (UMR CNRS 6597), Ecole Centrale de NantesNantesFrance

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