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Unread 02-03-2009, 06:31 PM   #1
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BREAKING: Chris Bangle quits BMW, auto industry

Filed under: Hirings/Firings/Layoffs, BMW

You won't have Chris Bangle to kick around anymore. The BMW Group design chief famously (or infamously, depending on your point of view) took BMW styling in a radical new direction beginning with the 2002 7-Series, a car that featured the extremely controversial "Bangle Bustle," and then really pushed the envelope (and some enthusiasts' patience) with the "flame-surfaced" 2002 Z4. The automaker's designs have mainstreamed considerably in the intervening years, but Bangle's impact is without question. Cues he pioneered have since been aped by other automakers; take the bustled trunklid of the Acura RL, for example.

And now he's quit BMW.

According to a brief statement released by the automaker, the 52-year-old Bangle has left to "...pursue his own design-related endeavors beyond the auto industry." From the sound of things, the breakup would appear to be an amicable one, as he will "maintain strong ties to the BMW Group." Then again, that could simply be an oblique way of noting that Bangle's influence on the vehicle lineup will be felt long after his departure. Adrian van Hooydonk, the head of design for the BMW brand, will succeed Bangle at the top of BMW Group design.

UPDATE: Official press release added after the jump.

[Source: Dow Jones | Photo by Oleg Nikishin/Getty]Continue reading BREAKING: Chris Bangle quits BMW, auto industry
BREAKING: Chris Bangle quits BMW, auto industry originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 03 Feb 2009 09:34:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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