QANTAS’ economy airline seat beats 153 competitors (including a toilet cistern and a pair of socks) to win Australia’s top design award
The Qantas A380 Economy Seat beat a pool of 154 entries to win the 2009 Australian International Design Award of the Year, announced in Melbourne tonight.
Mr Newson, an industrial designer and Qantas Creative Director, said he was honoured to receive the award.
“An enormous amount of energy was put into the A380, but particularly the economy seat, which, of course, accommodates the bulk of passengers,” Mr Newson said.
Judges described the seat as a “world class result” in a notoriously restrictive design category.
They praised the seat’s “revolutionary” footrest, the entertainment unit and the selection of materials, which included lightweight carbon fibre to help reduce weight.
“There are so many thoroughly considered elements in one very simple and elegant package. This product cannot be faulted,” a statement from the judges said.
The design award’s program director Stephanie Watson said the winning product was not selected until the last day of judging after a week of intense scrutiny.
“The products were beyond exceptional and the competition was tough,” she said.
Other finalists included Swiss-designed socks which keep your feet cool, a toilet cistern that can be hidden from view and a hearse which shows off the coffin.