The field of car design has been about as stable as an active volcano lately, with several major automakers replacing their design chiefs in quick succession. Over the past couple of weeks, Volvo's styling guru Steve Mattin quit, and he was replaced by Ford designer Peter Horbury, whose post in turn was taken up by Moray Callum. Before that, Volkswagen designer Derek Jenkins defected to Mazda, while Mazda's chief designer Laurens van der Acker was replaced by Ikuo Maeda. But in advance of all that, Chris Bangle sent shockwaves through the industry (in typical Bangle style) by leaving BMW. Adrian van Hooydonk was promoted to take his place, but after Munich's interior designer Michael Ninic died suddenly last year, Hooydonk was stretched a little thin.

The latest appointment, however, should help alleviate some of the pressure, as Marc Girard has been named head of BMW's interior design department. The French designer, educated at the Art Center College of Design, has been with the BMW Group for some 15 years now, and has been responsible for the cabins on several Bimmer and MINI models of late. It's a logical move for the Bavarian automaker, and a well-deserved step up for the talented cabinsmith.

[Source: Car Design News]