Crotches. Along with feet, the human crotch probably represents the greatest challenge of the human body when it comes to thermal management. The crotch is the lusty armpit of the legs, and they do get hot. At least one major carmaker is aware of this, and came to us for advice. Let’s not let them down.
Now, as you can imagine from the fact that I even typed the word ‘crotch’ here, the carmaker wishes to remain anonymous, but this is a sincere request for what we, the great Jalopnik Hive Mind, thinks about this concept.
I can tell you that the request for input came from a very well-known and large automaker, and specifically from someone in their technical development department, focusing on the car’s interior. Here’s what they asked, verbatim (but edited to remove any hint at what company):
Alright, so the idea comes from my [vehicle]. It has, for lack of better term, a driver crotch vent. Which, to me, is extremely useful in the summer months! For both men and women alike. I suppose seat ventilation can aid in a similar effect, but this is simpler and easier to implement.
I’ve asked opinions around our office, and not many people have experienced the ‘crotch vent’, so the consensus is hard to come by. So my questions comes if others find this vent extremely under-appreciated in vehicles today. It has come on other vehicles as well, but my experience is solely with the [vehicle].
Have you or any of your colleagues had a similar reaction or experience with the ‘crotch ventilation’ (or am I crazy)? I got the idea to ask you because you and your colleagues probably have a greater depth of knowledge with this era of vehicles, in addition to just new vehicles.
Crotch-cooling vents have been around for quite a while, even pre-dating modern HVAC systems; I know the 1952 Beetle is well-known among VW geeks as being the only year of the ‘crotch-cooler’ vents, and I know a number of old trucks had these as well.
Personally, I like them; on a really hot day, sometimes the groin is the best focus for your cooling efforts. When I worked from my house in LA, and didn’t have central air, sometimes my wife came up with the idea of putting a pair of my boxers in the freezer. Putting them on was like having an A/C enema, and it was fantastic. A crotch-vent could accomplish similar magic.
This is a direct call for your opinions, though. You want a chance to have a direct influence on both car design and the temperatures of thousands and thousands of human crotches? Now’s your chance. Seize it.