Controversial designer, Chris Bangle, whose designs drew strong criticism from the international motoring media, is leaving BMW to work outside the car industry
Adrian van Hooydonk, whom he has worked with for nearly 17 years, becomes the German outfit’s new design chief.
Bangle’s designs, particularly for the previous model 7-Series with its bustle boot, drew fire from motoring journalists.
But despite the media derision, his cars struck a chord with buyers and that particular 7-Series became the best-selling in the flagship model’s history.
Other controversial Bangle-designed models included the Z4 sports car, X6 crossover SUV and 1-Series.
BMW’s head of development, Dr Klaus Draeger, says Bangle has had “a lasting impact on the identity of BMW Group’s brands.
“His contribution to the company’s success has been decisive, and together with his teams he has mapped out a clear and aesthetic route into the future.”
He says Bangle now starts “a new phase in his life while maintaining strong ties with the BMW Group.”