Bentley has named a new design director to take the German-owned British brand into the future with new models that include the controversial Bentley EXP 9F SUV.
Luc Donckerwolke will take over from Dirk van Braeckel, who shifts within the Volkswagen Group to take up a new post with Volkswagen Group design, currently directed by Walter de Silva.
Donckerwolke’s first priority is certain to be the Bentley SUV that polarised opinions at the 2012 Geneva motor show.
Donckerwolke comes to Bentley from his previous position as head of advanced design for the Volkswagen Group, but his career within the umbrella organisation goes back as far as 1992, when he joined the ranks at Audi as an exterior designer.
Moving to Skoda in 1994 and Lamborghini in 1998 – where he was appointed head of design in 2003 and was involved with designing the Murcielago (pictured below) and Gallardo – Donckerwolke became director of design at Seat in 2005.
De Silva said Donckerwolke would bring a wealth of design talent to Bentley.
“His extensive experience makes him the ideal person to take forward Bentley’s future design language, at a time when the company has significant plans for new models,” he said.
Van Braeckel oversaw the development of the new generations of Bentley Continental and Mulsanne, and the polarising Bentley EXP 9F SUV first seen in March at the 2012 Geneva motor show where he told CarAdvice: “I’m sure people will like it, [but] people will [also] find it controversial in certain areas. And that’s a reason why the vehicle has already been a success.”