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Kia designer to oversee Hyundai, too

Mr President: As president of both Hyundai and Kia design, Peter Schreyer will be charged with streamlining resources on the one hand, and maintaining clear differentiation between the two brands on the other.

Hyundai appoints Peter Schreyer as global design chief for both Hyundai and Kia

Hyundai logo18 Jan 2013


HYUNDAI has turned to the acclaimed global head of design for its Kia subsidiary, Peter Schreyer, to take charge of the styling direction for both brands.

The Hyundai and Kia styling centres currently operate as separate entities, with no formal collaboration and each pursuing their own design language – Kia following a ‘simplicity of the straight line’ philosophy since 2006 and Hyundai the more curvaceous ‘fluidic sculpture’ creed launched in 2009.

Late last year, Mr Schreyer, a former Volkswagen and Audi chief designer who is still based in Germany, was rewarded for his highly successful work at Kia with a presidency – becoming the first non-Korean to receive the title – although his new responsibilities were still to be confirmed.

Now it has emerged he will head both the Hyundai and Kia design operations in a move that the Hyundai Motor Group says will “streamline its resources and create synergy between the two brands”.

The Asian auto giant also described the appointment as part of its broader strategy “to strengthen its competitiveness through qualitative growth” and emphasised that Mr Schreyer would lead the group’s long-term design vision “and enforce design differentiation”.

Hyundai Motor Group’s R&D centre vice-chairman Woong-Chul Yang said: “Strengthening our fundamentals, especially in the area of design, is imperative to secure long-term competitiveness.

“Design is not just the most visible aspect of the car, but it’s an area customers have a strong emotional connection to. It is at the centre of our efforts to enhance our brand value.

“Mr Schreyer brings a wealth of experience in design from the global auto industry and has a deep understanding of the Hyundai Motor Group.

“These valuable qualities will help build the foundation needed to make Hyundai and Kia leading global top auto-makers.”

Mr Schreyer left the Volkswagen Group to join Kia in 2006 and immediately set about putting the brand’s new design language into action. The arrival of the new Rondo 7 (also known as Carens overseas) this year means only the Carnival full-size people-mover will remain without the current Kia family look.

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