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AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY NEWS
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Hyundai appoints new chief designer

Christopher Chapman helped create vehicles for Isuzu and BMW during his 22-year career.

By Kylie MalstromPublished: January 03, 2012 07:20 AM

Hyundai America Technical Center Inc. (HATCI) has named Christopher Chapman chief designer of the Hyundai Design Center in Irvine. Chapman will take responsibility for new vehicle and concept design for the O.C. automaker.

"With over 22 years of experience in the industry working on esteemed automotive brands, Chris provides a level of talent that will help further our design portfolio," said SukGeun Oh, head of design and senior executive vice president of the Hyundai Design Center. "We are thrilled to have Christopher Chapman as chief designer for Hyundai and look forward to continuing the strong momentum of our vehicle designs."

Chapman joined the Isuzu Technical Center of America team, located in Cerritos, in 1989. He designed the exterior of the XU-1 show car – the winner of Best Concept at the 1993 Tokyo Motor Show. Chapman later joined the BMW Group at Designworks USA, in Newbury Park, in 1994. He created, among other things, the exteriors of the X5 Sport Activity Vehicle and X Coupe concept car. After a two-year stint in Germany, he designed the CS1 concept car, which was shown at the Geneva Auto Salon, as well as the 1 Series production Coupe and its derivatives.

Chapman has been behind the creation of several vehicles, including the new X5, X3 and Z4, plus the first BMW 1-series E87 since 2002, when he was appointed director of automotive design. He has directed BMW’s Transportation Design department since 2008.

"Christopher Chapman is an outstanding addition to the design team at HATCI," said John Krafcik, president and CEO of Hyundai Motor America. "We are proud to add such a talented individual to lead the team of dedicated designers at HATCI that will continue to develop innovative vehicles for both the United States and global auto markets."


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