• May 27, 2010
Now here's a juicy rumor. Word on the web is that Chris Bangle may be looking to step back into the auto-design mainstream by revisiting one of his former employers. Don't expect new BMW models to be wearing any of the guy's influences though. From what we understand from our Google Translator, Caradisiac believes that Bangle would be the perfect choice for Fiat to give its products an extra level of pizzazz as the company wades even deeper into international waters.

On one level, the move makes sense. After all, Bangle called Fiat home before he moved to BMW in 1991, and the designer cut his teeth and made a name for himself while working on the likes of the Fiat Coupe way back when. But we haven't heard word one from the designer about making a return to the mainstream auto world.

For now, we'll simply file this one under rampant rumor and wishful thinking. Fiat isn't having any trouble cranking out stylish products, and one would think the company has its hands too full dealing with bringing Chrysler back to life to bring on a big name like Bangle. Doesn't hurt to ponder "what if?" though, especially since the guy's non-compete dried up in March.

[Source: Caradisiac]


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  • 41 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Fiat does good enough.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The Bangle should go back to Fiat. It'd be a welcome return. Would be great to see his take on the range, although I guess he'll be working more with fiat domestics in general rather than the commercial vehicles.
      • 4 Years Ago
      He may not be able to design a car, but the man can design quite a beard.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'm from the group who thinks he did more wrong than good: Innovative, yes, but in the wrong direction such as wrong angles, proportions, overcooked lines and as a result some of the ugliest design elements in recent memory: The 7 and 6-series chest-drawer rear, the "bags under the eyes" (headlights) of the -previous- 7-series, pregnant-dash 6-series, sagging belly in the 1-series, etc. I will concede that the 5-series was a much better effort, probably brought on by the moderating effect of the-rising star Adrian van Hooydonk (now chief designer). Same goes for the Z4. Now, THIS guy knows about proportions and stance, just happens to be a little conservative (I'll give him some time until he launches the next 6/8 or 3-series to pass final judgement on that).

      As for Fiat, the Coupé, despite an oversized clamshell hood, was a very interesting car, as was the Barchetta, but then he went on to design one of the ugliest cars in all of cardom: The Multipla. My hair curls just thinking of it.

      Overall, then, it's better to be rid of him, thank you very much, and let Fiat continue designing beauties such as the 500, Grande Punto (mini-Maser front) or the latest Alfas.
      • 4 Years Ago
      If he can start an automotive design trend at Fiat/Chrysler that would be something to celebrate. While many found his flame surfacing controversial it did affect the industry in a good way. After the first few years the "shock" wore off and it started to look right on certain models.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The only reason it looked "right on certain models" is because we started being inundated with the stuff industry wide and we got used to the look. When everyone's doing it, some are bound to look better than others. Compared to the grace and styling of the 70s/80s BMW's though, they look awful in my opinion (and I doubt they will age well either).

      • 4 Years Ago
      I hope he rejoins Fiat ... the Fiat Coupe, for example, was stunning. And 160mph from a 2 litre engined car with a reasonable price tag in the mid 1990's was something else.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Just when we thought the Sebring couldn't look any worse...
      • 4 Years Ago
      I had hoped that we had seen and heard the last of Bangle even though
      his ugly and clumsy designs will still be seen on the roads for years to come
      to remind us of the atrocities he committed at BMW. PLEASE DON'T GIVE
      THIS GUY ANOTHER JOB!
      • 4 Years Ago
      You can say what you want about Chris Bangle but he finally got BMW off their butts. Good old German "Bauhaus" simplicity design goes only so far and does not translate to profits in today's global market. German quality and engineering does. Now it's up to BMW to keep up the momentum and look towards the future.
      • 4 Years Ago
      You guys do realize that most of his bad designs were actually created by Adrian Von hoydonk right? Things like the bangle butt weren't actually designed by bangle. He gets a lot of undeserved flak and I personally love his designs. Way better than the boring sausages that Munich is churning out now
      • 4 Years Ago
      What is it with designers and white turtle-necks? Is that something they just hand out when you graduate design school?
        • 4 Years Ago
        yes, during the graduation ceremony you are given a gift bag filled with neutral-tone turtleneck sweaters, designer glasses, a design jargon guide, and set of very expensive pencils
      • 4 Years Ago
      One thing the italians really do not need help with is aesthetic design.
      Many will say they are unreliable junk piles... but few will argue against the fact that they seem to almost bleed good looks.
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