Hit or miss? BAE Systems releases 1960s designs to mark heritage centre opening

A jumping jeep that can cross enemy barriers? A three-winged space plane that splits at 160,000ft? A commercial aircraft that can take off and land vertically?

BAE: Designs released (Credit: BAE Systems)
BAE: Designs released (Credit: BAE Systems)

No, these are not the results of an agency's latest brainstorm, but ideas that BAE System engineers had in the 1960s. Sadly, they were never put into production. The company released them to mark the opening of a new centre that celebrates its military history. 

How I see it

Alex Perry, account director, John Doe

How do you make armoured vehicles, explosive ordnance and defence electronics interesting to the everyday consumer? BAE Systems is one of those business goliaths that face this challenge daily.

But its decision to release a series of designs from the 1960s that never came to be is a great example of a simple, hard-working press office tactic that can deliver blanket media coverage.

By breathing life into some old designs, to create a set of polished, futuristic images and animations, it has managed to trigger an emotional response from its audience – ‘that’s pretty cool’ or ‘that’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever seen’ – while telling a story around its brand and seeding the message that it has opened a military heritage centre in Lancashire.

While not revolutionary, this captures a more light-hearted side to the firm’s typically sober outlook.


Was BAE's idea a hit or a miss? Tell us in the comments, below.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Already registered?
Sign in