|Ian Callum, Design Director, Jaguar, launching the 2010 Jaguar XJ|
He believes passionately that we can design ourselves out of recession.
|2010 Jaguar XJ - post launch sales success|
"There was an attitude that ‘money begat money’ and money was not made from manufacturing – we had become too sophisticated for that. But it’s only recently that Germany has been overtaken by China in terms of the value of their manufacturing export, which is huge.
Whilst this is a far cry from the region’s heyday of volume production (with considerable restructuring having taken place following the high profile plant closures at MG Rover, Longbridge in 2005 and Peugeot Ryton, Coventry in 2006), since then the West Midlands has carved out a reputation for luxury niche brands including Land Rover, Aston Martin, Morgan, and London Taxi sitting alongside Jaguar. Bentley is produced in Crewe to the North and most of Formula One Motorsport located in and around the wider Midlands with a focus in Northamptonshire and Oxfordshire.
|Ian Callum, Design Director, Jaguar Cars -|
'UK auto has the best design studios in the world'
One of the trends the sector is grappling with at the moment is the move towards smaller cars. Figures released by the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association show the market share for smaller cars in Europe increased from 39% in 2008 to 45% between January and November, 2009.
The car industry was one of the first businesses to recognise the need for different designs and ideas to refresh their approach and drive sales demand.
|Ian Callum, 'function comes first, |
then how to clothe it in the style of the day'
According to Ian a lot of today’s legislation is creating its own aesthetic. For example, boot lids are high because of aero-dynamic demands. Front ends are designed for pedestrian protection. “However” he adds, “function always comes first – then how to clothe it in the taste of the day.
"The E-Type, for example, is beautiful because it is visually correct. It is clearly a car of the ‘60s. Malcolm Sayer, who came from the aerospace industry, created cars he felt would go through the air effectively. However, it was only later that the impact of the rolling road on the aero dynamics was fully understood, so this was not fully taken into account at the time. The legals today would prevent a design like this ever coming to market. However I love these design classics and their design integrity.”
Jaguar Cars: http://www.jaguar.com/gb/en/
3rd September 2010