The senior vice-president of BMW Group Design has defended the latest styling language employed by the Munich-based firm, describing the recently revealed Concept 4 as “expressive”.
Revealed at the Frankfurt motor show in September 2019, the BMW Concept 4 employs a radical new interpretation of the firm’s signature kidney grille, a design feature that quickly became a talking point.
Speaking to Autocar, Adrian van Hooydonk defended the automaker’s latest change in styling direction.
“I’m not a psychologist but I know BMW is a brand that not only has customers, it has fans. They know our entire design history and have strong opinions on that. I don’t think that’s a bad thing, it means we have really connected with these people on an emotional level,” he told the British publication.
“Okay, I know that there might be some discussion with fans because they’ve grown to love what you’ve just done and you’re changing it already.
“As a company, you have to keep moving. The minute you start standing still, you become an easy target. The market is very competitive now, more than ever. But the hardest thing to do is make changes while you are successful. If you are no longer successful, people will immediately start saying you need to make changes, but then you are in panic mode,” he added.
Van Hooydonk went on to describe the Concept 4 – which effectively previews the next 4 Series – as a “sporty coupé” that by definition “has to have a very expressive design”.
“You see that all around the car, not just the front. But there are not that many lines or elements – it’s not a complex design. We want to do this for all our cars; we want to have fewer elements, then each element you use plays a bigger role,” the 55-year-old explained.
Ryan has spent most of his career in online media, writing about everything from sport to politics and other forms of crime. But his true passion – reignited by a 1971 Austin Mini Mk3 still tucked lifeless in a dark corner of his garage – is of the automotive variety.