Volvo Gets New Design ChiefPosted on April 1st, 2009
Peter Horbury leaves Ford: returns to Volvo May 1
Peter Horbury, the stylist who penned the XC90 sport-utility vehicle, returns to Volvo as vice president of design on May 1. The British-born and educated designer is leaving his post as executive design director for Ford: a position he held for five years. Horbury also served as executive director of design for Ford’s Premier Automotive Group, where he was responsible for Jaguar, Land Rover, Volvo and Aston Martin.
Horbury’s is known for clean, urban designs that are reminiscent of Bauhaus architecture. His designs for Mercury, including the current Milan, revamped the brand’s image.
“Ultimately, the strongest design identities come from- and reflect- the culture of their origin,” said Horbury. Although his own design sense was European, he was able to empathize with legions of pony car fans, in developing the 2010 Mustang.
Most recently, Horbury led the Ford Americas design team in a new generation of Lincolns, including the 2009 MKS, 2010 MKZ and MKT. Other Ford designs include the current Focus, Flex, Taurus, Fusion and F-150 pickup truck. The Ford Flex cross-utility vehicle won the Active Lifestyle Vehicle of the Year award for 2009 in the best value category.
Horbury replaces Stephan Mattin, who is leaving Volvo to pursue other opportunities.
“Peter has a deep knowledge of Volvo and understands how to use the power of design to define a brand,” said J Mays, group vice president of design and chief creative officer for Ford. “Peter was the creative force behind the new Lincoln design language and before that, some of the most successful Volvo designs.”
During his first tenure at Volvo, Horbury reshaped the automaker’s design language, beginning with the ECC concept in 1992. In 1998, Autocar honored him as designer of the year. Subsequent S40, V40, S60, V70 XC90 and C30 designs reflect his influence.
Horbury is succeeded at Ford by Moray Callum, who came to the company in 1995 after working for Chrysler and Peugeot-Citroen. Callum began his career at Ford overseeing global design for Mazda. He is currently design director for cars, Ford Americas, heading design teams for the current Mustang, Taurus, Fusion and Mercury Milan.
“Moray and I worked together with J to build a leaner and more efficient organization in North America,” said Peter Horbury. “I’m confident that under Moray’s leadership, that momentum will only grow.”
One response to “Volvo Gets New Design Chief”
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