Light Up Your Ride

Calling all vehicle innovators! Submit your boldest ideas for a unique external lighting mod. Let your imagination shine!

This challenge is closed


This challenge is closed



The goal of this challenge is to discover new possibilities and to tap into unexplored market demands with innovative auxiliary lighting solutions for the front of all vehicle categories, ranging from trucks and buses to recreational vehicles and off-roaders. We are looking for ideas that transcend the existing marketplace of available products, so feel free to dream boldly in this challenge.


Hella is a leading provider of lighting and electronic components, occupying a Tier 1 position within the Automotive industry. This  encompasses all vehicle categories, ranging from trucks and buses to recreational vehicles and off-roaders. Within the realm of off-highway applications, Hella has been a reliable supplier of supplementary work lights and main headlights, catering to both aesthetic- and performance-oriented demands. 

At present, Hella is actively seeking novel and groundbreaking solutions to elevate and enhance the driving experience, capturing the driver's imagination. This pursuit revolves around augmenting visibility under all lighting conditions and fostering driver-passenger engagement with innovative devices. These devices, inspired by the fundamental concept of headlights auxiliary lighting, transcend their traditional roles, assuming multifaceted functions while intelligently interfacing with the vehicle and its operator. 

The implementation of these feature-rich solutions can be envisaged for the front or lateral exteriors of the aforementioned vehicle categories, catering to both showcase models and purpose-built workhorses. The front exterior of a vehicle includes components like the bumper, grille, headlights, and hood, which collectively define the vehicle's frontal appearance and functionality. The lateral (side) exterior encompasses elements such as doors, side mirrors, windows, wheel wells, and trim, all of which contribute to the vehicle's overall design, utility, and aesthetics.



Winning Solutions 

Hella is looking, first and foremost, for an innovative and unique auxiliary lighting concept that builds on prior Hella expertise. The solution should be technically feasible, new to the world, and should add substantial value for the user.

Your concepts might include (food for thought): 

  • Technical details, drawings, sketches, and/or renderings.
  • Basic instructions for assembly and disassembly so as to minimize modifications to the base vehicle. This could potentially involve secure quick-mount solutions.
  • Ideally, having universal, cross-manufacturer vehicle compatibility will be helpful for accessing a broader market.
  • Ideas for new mounting locations that make more sense in modern vehicles rather than the familiar, traditional locations. 
  • Methods for securing the product against theft or other damage.
  • If applicable, any proposed features related to controlling the product from an app, dashboard or other tools. 
  • Your ideas for additional use cases, expanding the range of features beyond standard lighting to include other functionalities. 
  • A description of your technical assumptions and a possible prototyping setup.


What this challenge Is not looking for: 

  • Restrictions or limitations due to legal requirements: in other words, think outside the box! There will be time to review these requirements later on.
  • A new headlamp design. This challenge is about finding a new class of product(s) that addresses a market need in the long term and could include multiple designs in future.

 A black truck with blue lights

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  A black truck with lights on

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Timeline and Prizes


Open to Submissions

Tuesday, 3 October 2023

Submission Deadline

Tuesday, 5 December 2023 @ 5:00pm (ET)

Winners Announced

Wednesday, 31 January 2024


Prize Purse - $20,000

Hella Challenge Prize Winners 
1st Prize - 1 winner$5,000

2nd Prize - Up to 2 winners


3rd Prize - Up to 4 winners


Total - Up to 7 winners

Total $16,000


Honorary Mentions

At the judges’ discretion, up to 8 additional teams/individuals will be selected for this distinction.


Total - Up to 8 honorable mentions

Total $4,000


In addition to the total $20,000 prize purse for this challenge, there are other non-monetary prizes for participating: 

  • Winners, including challenge prize winners and honorary mentions, may be offered an opportunity to work with Hella to implement their solution. 

Winners’ concepts may be featured in future marketing materials. Additional public recognition of the winners may be offered through other organizations and opportunities.

Judging Criteria and Submission Form





Proposal Quality 

Is the submission complete and responsive to the challenge guidelines? Does it include enough detail to understand the concept? It may include the following:

  • Technical details and drawings/sketches.
  • Basic thoughts about assembly, mounting or setup. 
  • Proposal of features and use cases for the product.  
  • A simple description of the technical assumptions and a possible prototyping setup.



How feasible is this solution from a technical perspective, including needed resources and knowledge as well as timeline.



The idea builds on Hella experience in lighting and electronics, while addressing a new market need not seen before.


User Value 

Creation of real value an end user would be willing to pay for.


Market Fit and Target Audience

The submission has identified a potential market niche for the product and the target audience seems to fit the product’s value and features.






Submission Form     

Question / Section TitleTypeHelp text  for the solverCharacter Limit
Default Questions   
TitleText (One Line)Give your submission a title.


Short DescriptionText (Multiple Lines)Describe what your solution proposes.


EligibilitySection Header  
Where are you based?Geographical locationTell us where you are submitting from. Where are you a legal permanent resident? 
How old are you?Date of BirthPlease provide your birthdate. This challenge can only reward ideas from participants who are 18 years and older at time of submission. 
Tell us your story or your team’s story!Text (Multiple Lines)

We would love to get to know you and your team better. What motivated you to join this challenge?


Who is on your team, what are their roles, and what experience do they have?


Your SubmissionSection Header  
Concept OverviewText (Multiple Lines)

We would like to understand your idea in detail. What can you tell us about it?


Describe your product idea and the technical assumptions you have made.


Features and ValueText (Multiple Lines)Share your thoughts on your product’s unique features and their added value for the user. Why does your product stand out from the existing world of lighting mods?


Visual DepictionsDocument (.pdf, .jpeg, .zip, .png)Show what your idea is about. Provide us with some visuals of your proposed product. You can submit a drawing, visual mock-up, rendering, etc. You may also provide multiple visuals in a zip file, if you prefer. 
Potential ObstaclesText (Multiple Lines)

Please describe any problems or difficulties you foresee for your concept. Perhaps you are unsure how to implement a particular feature or ensure the security of a certain piece of hardware?

We mostly would like to understand the underlying difficulties that require further development.


Market Fit and Target AudienceText (Multiple Lines)

Share your thoughts about the potential market fit for your concept and the target audience you believe would engage with your product. 

Familiarize us with some of the personas that might benefit from your concept. Are they avid outdoorsmen? Ranch workers? Etc.?


Future Prototyping StepsText (Multiple Lines)Share your thoughts on any important steps that need addressing in order to prototype your idea. How could we test your idea rapidly?


Necessary Resources and FeasibilityText (Multiple Lines)

Please list the resources, capabilities, and knowledge needed to implement your idea.

Does your concept require custom coding work? Does it require a special material or highly accurate machining? Etc.


 A car with lights on top of it

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Challenge Rules

Participation Eligibility:

The challenge is open to all adult individuals, private teams, public teams, and collegiate teams, where competitors are at least 18 years of age at time of submission. Teams may originate from any country so long as US sanctions do not prohibit prize payments. Submissions must be made in English. All challenge-related communication will be in English. 

No specific qualifications or expertise in the field of lighting or vehicle mods is required. Prize organizers encourage outside individuals and non-expert teams to compete and propose new solutions. 

To be eligible to compete, you must comply with all the terms of the challenge as defined in the Challenge-Specific Agreement

Registration and Submissions:

Submissions must be made online (only), via upload to the website, on or before 5:00 pm ET (New York) on December 5, 2023. No late submissions will be accepted.

This challenge allows multiple submissions per individual/team. Should you have multiple entries to submit to this challenge, they will be considered separately. Whether or not multiple entries from the same individual or team may be chosen for a prize is up to the discretion of the Challenge Sponsor. You are not required to submit multiple entries, if that option is available.

Intellectual Property Rights:

As detailed in the Challenge-Specific Agreement – If Challenge Sponsor notifies Innovator that Submission is eligible for a Prize, Innovator will be considered qualified as a finalist (“Finalist”). Finalist must agree to grant to the Challenge Sponsor a royalty free, non-exclusive license in respect of all such intellectual property rights, if any, for the purposes of commercial exploitation of the idea or concept demonstrated by the Submission. Notwithstanding granting the Challenge Sponsor a perpetual, non-exclusive license for the submission, Finalist retains ownership of the submission.

Consolation Prize:

In the event that none of the submissions sufficiently meet the minimum Judging Criteria, the sponsor reserves the right to adjust the prize strategy for the challenge and award the following consolation prizes to the competitor(s) that score the highest:

  • Consolation Prize 1: $500
  • Consolation Prize 2: $500

Awarding of the Prize:

The Individual Submitter or Team Captain is automatically designated as the Recipient of the prize monies. The Individual’s or Captain’s name must also match the Authorized Person on the receiving Bank Account. No changes are permitted to the prize Recipient after the Submission Deadline date. If you wish to change who would receive the prize monies, those changes must be completed prior to the Submission Deadline. View our Knowledge Base article here for how to change Team Captains.

Additional Information

  • By participating in the challenge, each competitor agrees to adhere to the HeroX Intellectual Integrity Policy and promises to submit only their original idea. Any indication of "copying" amongst competitors is grounds for disqualification.
  • All applications will go through a process of due diligence; any application found to be misrepresentative, plagiarized, or sharing an idea that is not their own will be automatically disqualified.
  • All ineligible applicants will be automatically removed from the competition with no recourse or reimbursement.
  • Challenge Sponsor has the right to make updates and/or make any changes to, or to modify the scope of the Challenge Guidelines, Challenge Schedule, and Winning Criteria at any time during the Challenge. Innovators are responsible for regularly reviewing the Challenge site to ensure they are meeting all rules and requirements of the Challenge. 
  • No purchase or payment of any kind is necessary to enter or win the competition.
  • Void wherever restricted or prohibited by law. 

Challenge Updates

Winner Announcement

Jan. 31, 2024, 8 a.m. PST by Meltem Amet Oglou

Hello HeroXers,


again we want to thank you for that incredible response and creative idea submissions to our Light Up Your Ride Challenge! 

Our judging team has selected the top 3 submissions that most closely align with the criteria and intent of this challenge. We are delighted to announce the following winners. 


Congratulations! Here are the top 3 ideas:

1.            Lumilink - a modular headlamp that can share light sources.  (Taipei, Taiwan)

2.            Optical Lane Assistent (OLA) - headlamp that projects an illuminated line on the street to better estimate the outer limit of the car (Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany)

3.            Headsup Lighting - a lighting system that identifies the driver's vision, comprising an eye-tracking device in the car  (Budapest, Hungary)


We will now continue to build on the ideas and setup development projects to validate the feasibility.  

To the winners: please have a look for further communications from HeroX in order to complete the rewarding. 
Beyond the winners, we also have many honorary mentions. These interesting and creative submissions are also worth rewarding! 

If you do not hear from us, please note that we are very grateful for your interest and wish you all the best in your endeavours. 

Thank you for your commitment and your ideas to path the way to a new, unique external lighting mod.

Thank You for your Submissions

Dec. 5, 2023, 2:01 p.m. PST by Lulu

And just like that, it’s over! Thank you to all of you who sent in submissions. We can’t wait to finally see what you’ve been working so hard on. 

Crowdsourcing would be nothing without the crowd — that’s you! Thank you for being an indispensable part of this process, and using your brainpower for the greater good.

Congratulations on completing your submission. This is not an easy process, and you deserve a pat on the back for your hard work and dedication. Thank you!

Eight Hours Left

Dec. 5, 2023, 6 a.m. PST by Lulu

It’s almost over! You have eight hours left to send in your Light Up Your Ride challenge submission. 

Be sure to get your submission in well before the deadline. We don’t want you to have put all this work into your project, only to miss the deadline by a hair. Please send it in no later than December 5, 2023 at 5:00pm Eastern Time.

Good luck finishing up your submissions! We can’t wait to see all of your hard work.

Two Day Warning

Dec. 3, 2023, 9 a.m. PST by Lulu

It’s the final push! Your project is due in two days, on December 5, 2023 at 5:00pm Eastern Time.

Whether you’re just finishing off the final tweaks, or you’ve got a whole project left to complete, we have faith in you (here’s looking at you, procrastinators). Keep on trucking, and you’ll be done soon.

As you make the final tweaks to your project, it’s a good idea to begin the submission process now. Take the time to familiarize yourself with the submission portal and make sure that all your files are in the correct format.

If you have any last minute questions, now is the time to ask them. Use the forum or comment directly on this post, and we’ll get back to you right away.

Good luck, innovators!

One Week Warning

Nov. 28, 2023, 9 a.m. PST by Lulu

It’s that time — you’ve got a week left to submit!

The final submission deadline is December 5, 2023 at 5:00pm Eastern Time (New York/USA). No late submissions will be accepted, so make sure to give yourself plenty of buffer time.

We all know the panic of having our computers crash right before a submission deadline. Don’t let this happen to you! Start the submission process a few days before it’s due, and aim to submit your project at least three hours before the final deadline just in case your tech decides to turn on you.

We can’t wait to see what you’ve come up with. Best of luck!