In the wake of Chris Bangle's decision to resign from the top job, Adrian van Hooydonk takes over as Director of BMW Group Design with immediate effect. In his new position van Hooydonk will be responsible for the design development for the BMW, Rolls-Royce and Mini brands.
"I am honored and extremely excited to take on this new responsibility," says van Hooydonk. "BMW, Mini and Rolls-Royce produce the best cars and motorcycles in their segment, and I am really looking forward to being able to contribute to the future development of these brands."
Born in the Netherlands, van Hooydonk studied at Delft Polytechnic University in Holland and later at the Art Center Europe in Vevey, Switzerland, from which he graduated in 1992. From there he came to Munich, where he joined BMW as a designer. In the year 2000 he went to California to work for BMW Group's renowned design agency DesignworksUSA, then shortly after rose to the position of Director - a role he carried out from 2001 to 2004, when he was promoted to head up the Brand Design Studio for BMW Automobiles under the stewardship of newly appointed BMW Group Design Director Chris Bangle.
Responsible for recent BMW designs such as the 6 Series and 7 Series, van Hooydonk's design influence is also apparent in concept cars like the Z9, the Concept CS (unveiled in Shanghai in 2007) and the M1 Homage design study. In 1997 van Hooydonk created the ACV 30 Show Car for Mini, and more recently headed up the design development of the latest 7 Series and Z4 sports car. The forthcoming Progressive Activity Sedan (PAS) concept, which premieres at the Geneva Auto Show in early March, is also said to bear the hallmark of van Hooydonk's design philosophy.
Speaking of his hopes for the years to come, van Hooydonk said: "I have no doubt that there are challenges ahead, but BMW's depth in engineering and the passion of its talented design team is as strong as ever. Together I am sure we will be able to create some very sophisticated and extremely attractive concepts."
Interview: Adrian van Hooydonk, Director Design, BMW Cars
Design Review: BMW Concept CS
Design Development: BMW 7 Series
Who's Where: Chris Bangle resigns as BMW Group Design Director