Adrian van Hooydonk says many changes are coming to the design icon.
BMW global design boss Adrian van Hooydonk has confirmed that not only are there more kidney grille design changes planned but they will also differ from model to model. Speaking to BMW Blog, van Hooydonk said that these styling alterations will vary based on the vehicle's size. For example, there are large and vertical grilles on the X7 SUV while the M3 and M4 feature gaping air intakes up front for performance purposes.
As for the just-revealed i Vision Dee concept, a preview of the upcoming Neue Klasse, van Hooydonk admitted its radical design appears as if the carmaker "skipped a generation" but the reasoning makes total sense. "The world is changing faster and faster," he said. "Some things that, years ago, one could dream of, or you could see it in a sci-fi movie, now become very close, become real. And some of that you'll see [here] as well."
The concept's grille design is definitely much simpler and far more high-tech than anything we've seen from BMW to date, and van Hooydonk is fully aware not everyone is going to like it. Still, design always needs to progress and the design team embraced that.
"We knew that people were going to be talking because of course we know when we're making a change," he said. "We also know that getting people talking is not necessarily bad. What would be bad is if people would talk but not buy. But they talk and buy, so then you're still on the right side." In short, the i Vision Dee represents the next phase of BMW's i-brand styling that began with the i3 and i8.
The concept's interior is also extremely simple as it's stripped of a now-typical infotainment screen and buttons in general. Instead, all that information is displayed on the windshield, stretching from A-pillar to A-pillar.
BMW did not outright state that this technology will debut in the near future, but van Hooydonk added that the concept is jam-packed with lots of new technologies, many of which are far from production ready. But, the concept is still "full of ideas that we are actually quite serious about."
One idea, for example, is the wild E Ink paint scheme. This color-changing technology consumes less energy than some may think, thus making it far more suitable for eventual production.
The technology turnaround time today is significantly less than it was just a decade ago, so, as van Hooydonk concluded, "it's like an instant - you dream it, you visualize, you build it … nobody wants to see concepts that perhaps in ten years maybe will influence my life anymore, " Van Hooydonk said. "It has to happen faster."