The mind behind the look of much of the modern Ford global range is retiring. Martin Smith, Head of Ford Design in Europe, will give up his position on July 1 and will leave the company altogether at the end of the year. He will be replaced by current Strategic Concepts Group leader Joel Piaskowski (pictured above).
Ford's highly influential head of design, J Mays, has announced that he'll be retiring from his position after 33 years in the industry, 16 of which were at the Dearborn, MI-based company. Upon departure, he'll be succeeded as group vice president of design by Moray Callum. If that last name sounds familiar, yes, he's the brother of Jaguar's Ian Callum.
Lincoln is "not true luxury," according to Ford's design boss, J Mays. His statements come from a story in The Detroit News that saw candid language on the issues facing Ford's troubled premium brand. Notably, there's a need for a strong character, with Mays saying, "Every brand needs to have a DNA and a unique selling point and things in the vehicle that make you think, 'That's that particular brand.'"
It's a big week for buildings: after the announcement of Lamborghini's prototype center, not only is Ford not pulling out of Europe, it has spent €11.6 million ($14.3M U.S.) to expand its design center in Germany. The 3,000 square-meter architectural addition to the location charged with global design of small and compact Ford models revamps existing studios, adds a "powerwall" for projecting 3D designs and virtual envrionments, along with new machines for clay modeling.
It's been no secret that part of Ford's turnaround plan (or we calling it Bold Moves anymore?) is to reunite its North American and European operations with more platform sharing and a common design language. With product life cycles being as long as they are in this industry, none of that will happen overnight. In fact, J Mays, Ford's group vice president of design and chief creative officer, told Automotive News that a single uniting global design language for both sides of the pond will be re
Apparently tough and muscular are favored by truck and SUV buyers. Who knew? In a Kelley Blue Book Brand Watch poll, active car shoppers picked the look of Ford's trucks and non-luxury SUVs over the competition.