With BMW putting its Chris Bangle days behind it, one name that has emerged as a dominant force in the design of German luxury sedans has been Karim Habib. The Canadian-Lebanese designer and engineer rose up through the ranks of the BMW Group design offices, styling among other vehicles, the current 7 Series. A few years ago, Habib defected to arch-rival Mercedes-Benz, but was lured back to Munich to head up the brand's exterior design department.
Both Mercedes-Benz and BMW have seen recent design-chief departures, and now there's been a defection. Karim Habib, who had a hand in the F01 7 Series while at BMW, has left the Roundel for the three-pointed star. Habib's move to Mercedes has him overseeing Mercedes' advanced design studio in Stuttgart, working with MBZ design chief Gorden Wagener.