Chris Chapman, senior chief designer at Hyundai's Design Center has an ambitious plan for the coming years. He wants each Hyundai model to have their own visual identity.
"We're going for more of this chess-piece rather than the family look. We're using consistently shared elements … but we're going to avoid this sort of Russian-doll approach to our vehicles in the future," Chapman told reporters at the media launch of the Kona EV.
Designers will be tasked to give each model "a look that matches its intended use and customer." Take for example the Kona crossover which has a funky look that should appeal to a younger audience than the new Santa Fe. Another example is the Kona and Kona EV that have different design touches to set them apart.
"Both kind of have extroverted design, but they're dressed differently for different demographic purposes," Chapman said.
Part of Chapman's motivation for this comes from his past. As Roadshow notes, he worked as a designer at BMW during the Chris Bangle era which brought forth the problem of telling the difference between the 3, 5, and 7-Series. He said BMW referred to this as "Eine Wurst, drei Grosse" -- one sausage, three sizes. While he may not say it outright, reading between the lines reveals he would like to avoid this.