Sorry, 4 Series front-end haters.
Not everyone has warmed to the controversial front-end styling that adorns the new BMW 4 Series lineup. That massive kidney grille has also spread to the M3 and M4. Even the X7 SUV sports aggressive styling elements not previously seen on other X models. Like the look or not, we'd all better get used to BMW's new design approach. Speaking to Auto Express, head of BMW design, Domagoj Dukec, admitted some of the 4 Series criticism has been "brutal," but there are no plans to change course.
"For some customers, if you want to reach them, you have to stand out," he said "But you can't make a design that pleases everyone. If you are in this business you know how it is in design."
"Every day you talk to people inside and outside of the company and everyone has an opinion - and a different taste. If you want to create something that really stands out it must be distinguished and it has to be different." Dukec further acknowledges he was "not surprised" by some of the negative reactions but believes customer engagement is vital instead of ignoring them entirely.
Customer data sourced from social media also plays a role in making some design decisions, but at the end of the day the company remains focused on being a "progressive and pioneering brand" that will always aim to blend "sportiness and elegance."
He did not offer specifics about future model styling, such as the next-generation 5 Series, but we've already seen plenty of i4 spy photos and there's no question that the all-electric sedan will push design boundaries in its own unique way. The also-new BMW iX SUV EV is another prime example of going bold while still attempting to maintain sophistication.
"There is not one solution or recipe but we always want to make the car desirable and stand out," Dukec concluded.
Every time an automaker pursues a new design direction there are those who don't like what they see. And then there are customers who keep an open mind and let new styling choices grow on them. We have a feeling that'll (eventually) be the case with the new 4 Series.