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Quadruple steering wheel trend


If the rectangular steering wheel on the Tesla Model S was once noticed by its inconvenience, in fact, this idea is not the first time.

Currently, in the high-performance car line, almost only the Hyundai Elantra N retains the simple circular steering wheel. In the remaining models, the steering wheel is at least partially flat. Even a quadrilateral steering wheel like that of the Model S is not rare, nor is it recent, when the Voisin C6 Laboratoire model was introduced in 1923 with the steering wheel being a flat top and bottom, two curved edge.

The two opposite sides of the steering wheel are flat of the Voisin C6 Laboratoire model of the French car company Avions Voisin (1905-1946). Photo: News d’Anciennes

Model Plymouth Fury (1959-1978) used the same steering wheel as the Voisin C6 Laboratoire, but more square.  Photo: Pinterest

Model Plymouth Fury (1959-1978) used the same steering wheel as the Voisin C6 Laboratoire, but more square. Photo: Pinterest

Designers experimented with a quadrilateral steering wheel in the early 1960s. Pictured is the 1963 Chevrolet Corovair Testudo concept. At an American auction in 2011, the car sold for $396,000.  Photo: Motor1

Designers experimented with a quadrilateral steering wheel in the early 1960s. Pictured is the 1963 Chevrolet Corovair Testudo concept. At an American auction in 2011, the car sold for $396,000. Photo: Motor1

The steering wheel is quadrilateral but rounded on the British model, Austin Allegro (1973-1982).  Photo: Classic Cars

The steering wheel is quadrilateral but rounded on the British model, Austin Allegro (1973-1982). Photo: Classic Cars

One of the arguments is that the flat bottom of the steering wheel helps increase leg room, like the Audi RS4 in the photo.

One of the arguments is that the flat bottom of the steering wheel helps increase legroom. By the mid-2000s, the non-round steering wheel really exploded, an example being the Audi RS4 in the photo. Photo: Audi

Supercars like the Lamborghini Gallardo also quickly followed the trend.  The flat bottom steering wheel has become a familiar phrase.  Photo: Lamborghini

Supercars like the Lamborghini Gallardo also quickly followed the trend. “Flat-bottomed steering wheel” became a familiar phrase. Photo: Lamborghini

By the 2010s, flat-bottomed steering wheels were featured on a wide range of performance cars, from the Ferrari LaFerrari (pictured) to the Aston Martin DB11.  Not even just the bottom is flat, but more than one edge is flat.

By the 2010s, flat-bottomed steering wheels were featured on a wide range of performance cars, from the Ferrari LaFerrari (pictured) to the Aston Martin DB11. Not even just the bottom is flat, but more than one edge is flat. Photo: Ferrari

The 2018 Aston Martin Valkyrie has a true quadrilateral steering wheel, and is more rectangular.  Similar designs are often inspired by F1 racing cars.  Photo: Aston Martin

The 2018 Aston Martin Valkyrie has a true quadrilateral steering wheel, and is more rectangular. Similar designs are often inspired by F1 racing cars. Photo: Aston Martin

Hypercar models such as the Lotus Avija and Mercedes-AMG Project One have a flat top steering wheel and a curved bottom edge.  Photo: Mercedes

Hypercar models such as the Lotus Avija and Mercedes-AMG Project One have a flat top steering wheel and a curved bottom edge. Photo: Mercedes

The 1,825-horsepower racing product, the Bugatti Bolide, has a semi-open design concept, from the exterior to the steering wheel.  And the control unit also has a flat bottom.  Photo: Bugatti

The 1,825-horsepower racing product, the Bugatti Bolide, has a semi-open design concept, from the exterior to the steering wheel. And the control unit also has a flat bottom. Photo: Bugatti

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