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Interview with BMW Design Director Adrian van Hooydonk

BMW's top designer on energy efficiency, electric cars and his creative approach

by CH Contributor
on 01 February 2010

by Tamara Warren


Adrian van Hooydonk, Director of BMW Group Design, envisions a motoring future shaped by sustainability and performance. Just completing his first year on the job as the head of BMW design (replacing Chris Bangle), van Hooydonk is responsible for the new BMW 5-series and the general direction of the BMW, Mini and Rolls Royce aesthetic.

The Dutch native helmed BMW DesignworksUSA for five years prior to landing Head of BMW Automobile Design, lending marked influence on the form language of BMW 6-Series and 7-Series, the Z9 Concept Car, the BMW Concept CS and the M1 Hommage Study. Cool Hunting recently spoke to van Hooydonk about the philosophy driving BMW's future at the 2010 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

Can you explain how green initiatives are impacting your work in BMW design?
From a design point of view, it provides a lot of opportunities. With the new drive trains that are around the corner for urban mobility with electric drive, it would be shame if we didn't take the opportunity to make (the cars) look different and cool. That's what we are about to do. We are working on a project now which will lead to a mega city vehicle, designed for urban areas. We are going to design it in such a way that people will see when they look at the car that the future has started. That’s one of our aims.

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