How to Make a Car on SketchUp

Written by carol adams
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How to Make a Car on SketchUp
Make a 3D car in SketchUp. (3d cars row image by Tottem Torro from

SketchUp is a 3D modelling program offered by Google. It comes in both a commercial and freeware version. SketchUp can be used to create models of various sorts, from buildings and bridges to machines and more. One interesting project that you can carry out is to make a 3D car. The best way to do this is to use the modelling functions inside SketchUp.

Skill level:

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  1. 1

    Open Google SketchUp. Select the 2D figure that by default is standing on the ground plane. Hit “Delete” on your keyboard to remove it.

  2. 2

    Select the “Line” tool from the tool palette on the left and use it to draw the outline of your car (as seen from the top) onto the ground plane. You can use the numerical readout in the lower-right corner to make sure you are getting the size right.

  3. 3

    Select the “Push/Pull” tool from the tool palette. Use the tool to extrude the surface upward, stopping when it is at the right height for the bonnet of the car.

  4. 4

    Select the “”Line” tool from the tool palette. Use it to draw to lines on the top of the shape you have created. Place them where you want the top of the car to be. Use the “Push/Pull” tool to extend the central polygon upward to form the bonnet.

  5. 5

    Use the “Line” tool to create more lines to better refine the shape of your car. Use the “Move” tool to adjust these lines. Use the “Push/Pull” and “Line” tools to create other extruded surfaces, such as windows or grills.

  6. 6

    Select the “Circle” tool from the tool palette. Starting at the point where the wheel well should be, click and create a circle. Use the “Push/Pull” tool to extend this shape through the other side of the car. Select the shape and right-click on it. Choose “Intersect.” This will divide the area of the wheel well from the rest of the car. Delete the excess polygons and lines.

  7. 7

    Use the “Circle” tool and the “Push/Pull” tools to make tires for the car. Use the “Move” and “Rotate” tools to position them.

  8. 8

    Click on the “Paint Bucket” tool. In the dialogue that appears, choose the colour you would like to apply to the body of the car and clink of those areas of the car to apply it. Repeat this to apply colours to all of the car. Save your work.

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