There's no two ways about it - design matters. New and fresh or clean and classic, there are promising aspects and potential pitballs with any design. Going off the reservation and venturing into some completely alien territory is usually unwelcome by consumers. Unless you're the expecption to the rule, there needs to be some type of familiarity that the consumer can latch onto. But at some point you really have to push the envelope.
Some great designs for packaging science (yes, that's a real thing) are out there. This doesn't apply to just soda cans and lunch boxes. What about the next generation of automobiles? Here's some from Motor Trend. I think there's quite a bit of classic look mixed with a hodgepodge of future-ish tidbits.
Over at CarTalk you can review four cars that people think should be built. Then again - there's probably a reason why they haven't been... .