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Kia hires ex-BMW designer to beef up style, identity

2017/09/14 09:40

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SEOUL, Sept. 14 (Yonhap) -- Kia Motors Corp., South Korea's No. 2 automaker, has hired Pierre Leclercq, a former BMW designer, to further differentiate the styling of its vehicles, the company said Thursday.

Starting from the end of September, the Belgian-born Pierre Leclercq, 46, will be responsible for developing Kia's long-term design strategy and leading design innovation for exteriors, interiors, materials and textiles as vice president, Kia Motors said in a statement.

"Kia has built a reputation for placing design at the heart of new car development, and I'm eager to work with the talented designers who have made the Kia brand synonymous with bold, energetic and modern vehicle design," Leclercq said in the statement.

The maker of the K5 sedan, the Soul boxcar and Sorento SUV is a sister company of South Korea's top carmaker Hyundai Motor Co.

Former BMW designer Pierre Leclercq in this photo courtesy of Kia Motors Corp. (Yonhap)  Former BMW designer Pierre Leclercq in this photo courtesy of Kia Motors Corp. (Yonhap)

"Pierre Leclercq has a unique insight into global vehicle design, and brings with him the necessary experience and expertise to help reinforce Kia's design identity in the coming years," Kia's President and Chief Design Officer Peter Schreyer said.

"Design has played a key role in the transformation of the Kia brand, and Pierre will help to ensure our design-led approach remains consistent across new model launches in new segments," he said.

The former designer of the high-performance BMW X5M and X6M SUV is the second foreign designer after Peter Schreyer, who was hired away from the Volkswagen Group in 2006.

kyongae.choi@yna.co.kr

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