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BMW's Bangle or Samsung's wrist

2011-03-17 12:47

BANGLE COMEBACK?: Once the world’s most controversial car designer, Chris Bangle has now moved into consumer electronics with Samsung.

BMW’s hugely controversial former chief designer, Chris Bangle, has been recruited by Korean electronics giant Samsung.

Samsung apparently won a bidding war with automotive rival Hyundai for the American’s services.

South Korea’s largest automaker Hyundai is desperate to be on an equal footing with its sister brand Kia, currently at the forefront of avant-garde design courtesy of its German chief, Peter Schreyer. Bangle though, appears to be done with the automotive industry.


Samsung officials are expected to pander to Bangle’s demands in terms of location, as the American is unlikely to relocate to South Korea.
A design studio will be set-up in Europe (in all likelihood close to Bangle’s Piemonte home, south of Turin) with a staff of 10 technical specialists from Samsung on permanent secondment to execute the former BMW designer’s vision.

Bangle’s work for Samsung will focus primarily on cellphones and tablet devices.

With the convergence of infotainment and communication technologies becoming an integral feature (and selling point) of contemporary cars, Bangle’s knowledge could help Samsung’s Galaxy tablet usurp its iPad rival as the portable automotive interface of choice.

Bangle is generally regarded as the most revolutionary designer of his generation. During his tenure as BMW's chief designer (1992-2009) the company finally managed to edge aside bitter rival Mercedes-Benz to become the world's best-selling premium auto brand.

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