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Mazda has a new styling chief. Dutchman Laurens Van den Acker will be putting the rather cumbersome appliqué "General Manager of the Design Division of Mazda Motor Corporation" on his office door, replacing Moray Callum (design head since 2001) who has been appointed to Ford's automotive design director post.

Van den Acker comes to Mazda from parent company Ford, where he was the automaker's Dearborn-resident Chief Designer, Strategic Design. The gifted multilingual designer has had a hand in a number of Blue Oval concepts from the last few years, including the Bronco, 427, 24/7 and Model U. Production-wise, some of his influence can be seen on the Escape and Mercury Mariner.

In light of Callum's move, Patrick Schiavone will be Ford's Design director for trucks.

The promotions are effective immediately.

[Sources: Mazdanews.com; Ford; Mazda]

(Tip nod: Igor)

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      As the owner of a Mazda3 hatch, having the new chief be the guy involved with the Escape is not encouraging. I don't see how the Escape could get more bland and uninspired. Hopefully he's the guy who did the Mariner which makes pretty good use of a bland base to get an OK car.

      Those concepts that he designed are nothing to get excited about either. Sigh.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I didn't realize the Escape had a designer.