body boxes configuration segment

Automobile Body Configuration

Posted: by David Sastre

When we talk about cars, it happens to heard words like fastback, monovolume or station wagon. But do we really know the meaning?

Well before to talk about different body configuration we need to divide the vehicle in boxes. Yes that’s it! When it comes to the very early design’s phase, designers talk about the basic configuration.

Definition of Body Configuration

The car’s body configuration is determined by the layout of the engine, passenger and cargo volumes.


Most common body design configurations are:

  • one-box (van)
  • two-box (hatchback)
  • three-box (sedan)

As a general rule the boundaries for car body volumes are the pillars. This ‘boxes’ are understood as engine layout, greenhouse and luggage space. This volumes can be shared by usage, for example, in hatchback configuration passenger volume and luggage space are the same volume.

For example, a hatchback and an SUV vehicles are both two-box designs, because both have a front volume to accommodate the engine, and a second volume which contains at the same time passenger and cargo space.

For more body configurations visit this.

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