Currently reading: Mini design chief to leave BMW
Gert Hildebrand, the main man behind Mini's styling for the past decade, will leave BMW this month
Autocar
News
1 min read
1 December 2010

Mini’s design boss, Gert Hildebrand, is to leave the company at the end of the year, parent firm BMW has announced.

Hildebrand, 57, has led the Mini design studio in Munich since January 2001, and his overseen the Mini hatchback, the Clubman, the Cabrio and the Countryman. Two more of his projects - the Coupe and the Roadster - are scheduled to reach production in 2011 and 2012 respectively.

Mini rules out UK design studio

BMW has not announced a reason for Hildebrand’s departure, beyond confirming that he “will be leaving the company on 31 December”. Mini sources say that Hildebrand is likely to enter “semi-retirement”.

However, the BMW group’s design chief Adrian van Hooydonk has been noticeably more vocal on Mini’s styling direction in recent months, perhaps indicating a shift in the brand’s styling leadership.

Mini: "We won't overdo it"

Hildebrand will be replaced by Anders Warming, a 38-year-old Dane who is currently in charge of exterior design for BMW. His CV includes the BMW Z4, the BMW 5-series and the 6-series coupe concept that was shown at the Paris show in the autumn.

“I would like to wish Gert Hildebrand all the best for the future and thank him for working with us so well and so successfully,” said van Hooydonk. “Anders Warming has the expertise, the necessary experience and the intuition to take the Mini brand, with the support of the entire Mini design team, into an ever more successful future.”

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thebaldgit 2 December 2010

Re: Mini design chief to leave BMW

Can't say i'm sorry to see him go Mini mk1 and mk2 were too similar and the off shoot variants became more and more ridiculous, the forthcoming coupe with its back to front cap roof design was beyond laughable.

Uncle Mellow 1 December 2010

Re: Mini design chief to leave BMW

corky73 wrote:

I'm sick of people on these forums thinking thay they have the right to be judge and jury on car design and what people want to buy and own.

The brand was already dead, unless you think a car design that was decades old would have cut it.

Take it easy. The MINI and MINI Clubman were popular , but Gert should have headed for the exit when his bosses told him to come up with a tall 4x4 MINI.

Citytiger 1 December 2010

Re: Mini design chief to leave BMW

corky73 wrote:

Yeah that's right.

Millions made and sold. Thousands kept in employment (mostly in the UK).

I'm sick of people on these forums thinking thay they have the right to be judge and jury on car design and what people want to buy and own.

The brand was already dead, unless you think a car design that was decades old would have cut it.

If it wasn't for BMW there probably wouldn't even be a news story on this website about MINI. Lost into the passage of time like so many British brands before it.

If you think your taste is so good then become a car designer and prove it.

If you actually did some research , you would know that the new mini was designed in the UK by MG Rover, and was chosen above the design put forward by BMW, if MG Rover had been managed right in the first place it would probably still exist.

BMW did throw lots of money at Rover admittedly, but they didnt have a strategy, all they did in the end was pick of the bits of technology they needed (Mini front drive technology and brand name as it became profitable, and Landrover AWD technology giving them the basis for the X5) and and threw the rest away.

It is possible to resurect a brand and change its fortune, look at Skoda as a prime example under VW ownership.

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