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Peter Schreyer and the new KIA design

Seoul, South Korea-

During a recent visit to Canadian journalists at KIA in South Korea, Peter Schreyer is ready to a long interview that we present here.

Q: At KIA, you often use names to designate your vehicles while european manufacturers employ more often alpha-numerical designations. Yet with the new Optima and Cadenza, we find the K5 and K7 designation on these models. What is your personal preference to call cars?

Peter Schreyer: Personally, I think this question applies to the design department but I prefer that you were speaking to the marketing people, at this time there are differences of opinion on this subject in the senior management ...

Q: If you look at your career until now, do you have succeeded in your print style on models of the range?

Peter Schreyer: I think with the new models K5, K7 Sportage and there are now an obvious affiliation between these vehicles and a clean style KIA brand is well established. In addition, the range of vehicles has been significantly redesigned and work continues so that very soon we will have a brand that has much evolved.

Q: KIA is a very young brand, when compared to the established brands that have a lot of history and still use and always of the elements of style that are their own design side. As you have the responsibility to establish the KIA style for years to come, what are the elements of style that are now clean, what is the visual signature of KIA?

Peter Schreyer: You know that BMW and Audi have not always had their current look, it is an evolution, and it is also at KIA issue of evolution in an ongoing process, but I think we already accomplished a lot and I think if you look at our more recent models, you can see a kind of brand DNA. The most important element is the "face" formed by the grille that identifies the car as a KIA at first glance the eye, and what is important to me is that our cars do not carry 'Elements purely "cosmetic" or decorative, the KIA design is rather simple what, paradoxically, is sometimes difficult to achieve, and I think the K5 is a good example of a simple design but also very expressive that is unique and remarkable. It is more a question of proportions, surfaces, relationship between the body and the glazing of the elements like it ...

Q: Having now established the face of KIA, is that it makes your job more difficult? If you were BMW, you would require to integrate the calender both nostrils and the "Hofmeister kick" that makes much of the design is somehow pre-determined, is that you limit your work?

Peter Schreyer: I think it is difficult to establish a "face", a visual signature when the mark was not a lot of history. BMW, the signature is present since the very beginnings, they have always used and are never not of facts. But for me, it was hard to find something unique and expressive thing that can evolve in the future by becoming longer or wider or use a new way. I think it is now very useful to have this grille that was difficult to define but not now present a problem precisely because we ...

Q: Within two years all models of KIA have been redesigned, then what will be your main challenge? Will you be accomplished everything you want?

Peter Schreyer: No, as I said earlier, this is a constantly evolving process. We already are working on the design of subsequent generations of vehicles that have just been added to the range. This is a job that never really end, it never gets to the point where we can say that now everything is finished, it is a continuous challenge to be still and always present the day I take my retirement and will be taken up by others.

Q: Over the last few days that we spent in South Korea has been much question of the evolution of the brand and the fact that it needs to move towards performance cars and battlements highest-end. As a designer, there are items of style that you believe important to establish this membership vehicles high-end?

Peter Schreyer On this issue, there are two elements. The first is: you're a registered high-end or not? I think KIA is on track to be more than just a brand of affordable vehicles and become a "premium" brand, but can not become a "premium" brand overnight, it must be a reflection of a progression. This was the case for Audi and it's more than just a matter of design, we must also take into consideration the technical elements, and this is a process that takes longer. If you say overnight that you are a "premium" brand, customers will not follow you. The K5 is a good example, its proportions, its headlights and taillights and especially its chrome strips quite unique that start from 'A' pillar to follow the roof line and reach the end of the rear window, the finished "piano "over the" gills "on the lateral and grille. All these items contribute to give a car more expensive than it is actually "look" car.

Q: When you start work on a new model, you made a competition between different design studios of the brand?

Peter Schreyer: Yes. At KIA we have three design studios has Namyang in Korea, in Irvine, California and Frankfurt, Germany, and in most cases, they find themselves in competition against each other, which allows us to have different points of view. It is sometimes very difficult to choose between these different approaches. For example, in the case of K5, the interior was designed by the California studio, outside the studio in Frankfurt, and in the case of the Sportage it was the reverse.

Q: If you had the choice to create a model "flagship" for the brand, an image car, what type of vehicle would it be?

Peter Schreyer: I think a convertible car guy, open to the outside world would be the best choice. A small roadster would fit perfectly with the mission of KIA ...

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