James Hope has been appointed Corporate Director of Design at Chery Motors, the Chinese state-owned carmaker. He joins Chery from General Motors, where he held the position of Assistant Chief Designer since February 2008.
Hope took up his new position on 16 January, based in Chery's Shanghai satellite studio from where he will report directly to Chen Anning, Chery's Head of Product Development.
"Clearly Asia is the place where car designers can make a big impact. To be immersed in such a dynamic and challenging environment was the main attraction for me personally," Hope told Car Design News.
"After having spent my career in North America and Europe it was the logical next step to expand both my personal and professional experience in Asia," he added.
Hope started his career at Ford in 1992 after graduating from CCS. During his time at the blue oval his design theme was chosen for the 2004 Ford Mustang, although he left before the model reached the production stage. From Ford he headed to cross-town rival Chrysler in 2000 to work on Dodge's truck line, followed by a three-year spell at Johnson Controls. While there he worked heavily alongside the design team of the 2004 Fiat Trepiuno concept, headed by Roberto Giolito, Fiat's Head of Design.
In 2004 he partnered David Hilton – now Head of Exterior Design for Bentley – at Motor City Europe in Switzerland before completing the Big Three hat trick by joining GM in 2008. Here his work included the 2012 Opel Zafira Tourer, a car shortlisted for Car Design News' Car Design of the Year Award, as the Assistant Chief of Exterior Design.