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Revolutionary vehicle designer Peter Schreyer has been elevated to the position of president at Kia Motors Corporation.

German-born Schreyer is the first foreigner to assume the role at the South Korean company, and becomes one of three presidents at Kia in the management board headed by Hyundai-Kia Group chairman Chung Mong Koo.

The 59 year old has been responsible for overhauling the brand’s entire product line-up since moving from Volkswagen Group in 2006.

The distinctive ‘tiger nose’ grille has become a signature of Schreyer’s new designs, applied to everything from the city-sized Picanto and Rio (above) to the Sportage and Sorento SUVs, Optima and Quoris sedans and the youth-focused Soul and Cee’d hatchbacks.

Kia has enjoyed a period of unprecedented growth around the world in Schreyer’s time at the design helm, in which he has helped transform the company’s budget brand image to one of an innovator and a global challenger.

Along with taking on the new management role, Kia confirmed Schreyer will retain his position as chief design officer where he will continue to promote design-led development of the brand’s next-generation vehicles.


  • The Real Wile E

    Peter principle

  • Robin_Graves

    Very smart bloke, ran as fast as he could from the bunkies that VAG were tacking together.

    • Guest

      Your an Absolute Tool!

      • Guest231

        Di*khead more like it.

    • Golfmother

      Maybe Ford can poach him to design a good looking falcoon .

  • AndyGF

    Think of the time when you first heard the name Kia, and you probably, like I did, thought it would go the way of the daewoo (or suzuki has in the USA ^_^), now they are a household name… Styling had a lot to do with it, so I reckon he deserves the position.

  • Martin

    Well done Schreyer. What a great outcome for all his hard work transforming KIA. Now, if only there were more Schreyers in the world..

  • Brendan

    Well done Peter. Some of the established brands could certainly take a leaf out of your play book with regards to their design philosophy…or lack there of.

  • Sumpguard

    The Koreans are smart. This ensures he has total control over the design direction of the brand  .Not just exterior but interior and ride/steering .I’m looking forward to seeing where he takes them.
     
       Nearly 2 years on and I am still getting compliments on my Sportage’s styling.  I can’t wait to see the next one. 
     
        He now needs to employ some suspension gurus from Germany to make the cars complete. The ride in my Sportage is pretty good but could be better. I predict that if KIA continue to move in their current direction they will be in the top 6 brands in Australia in 2-3 years. 
     
       They grew 25% just last year. More than any other brand and by a considerable margin. 

    • F1orce

      That’s true.

    • Browneye69

      Your dead right Sumpguard. Kia are doing nearly everything right except, in the case of my wife’s new Rio, the electric steering. They need to steal the elec steering out of the Fiesta and the car would be complete. I have no complaints about the suspension on the Rio. Looking at the Sportage diesel as my new car soon. 

  • george

    Kia has evolved, and it has more to do than just styling.  The diesels & auto combo’s are the best in the business at their respective price range.  

  • 42 = The Answer

    A much deserved promotion considering what he and his team have
    done for Kia for sure

  • F1orce

    Yeah well deserved..

  • Grosborn

    I will admit he has done a good job at Kia and deserves the recognition but hardly deserves the ‘revolutionary’ tag.
     Hyundai/Kia are not innovatory, their products are now relatively well styled, have  competitive safety, good warranties, lots of blingy things and are not excessively priced. Their cars are not revolutionary but obviously have wide appeal to people simply requiring reliable transport,
    Because the cars are so much better than they have been many fall into the trap of thinking they are better than they are (including some journalists who should know better). They still lack the driving enjoyment of many other European and Japanese competitors. They often look better though at the expense of driver and passenger vision,
    They have almost slavishly copied Toyota’s route to world domination and I am sure that Hyundai/Kia will attempt to emulate Toyota’s recent innovativation and newly re-discovered sporting credentials.
    If Kia ever introduce a real game changer then Schreyer maythen be revolutionary 

     

    • Sumpguard

      For the most part I agree. However what they have done is force other manufacturers (whether they care to admit it or not) to rethink their spec levels and their prices. Toyota have cut the price of the corolla for the first time EVER on a new model to slow the onslaught . So in terms of value for your dollar I think “revolutionary” is appropriate.

           In terms of development they are not. Not yet anyway .Though you will see tech coming out of there that is not available elsewhere in the near future.  They are now doing to Japan what the Japs did to the Americans 30 years ago. Learning from them with the aim of providing a better product for less money. They are on the right track and it is happening a damned sight faster than Japan managed! 

         Sth Korea is the world’s leading ship builder (Hyundai) and has surpassed many leading countries in electronics in a few short years. In 10 years time we will be having this same discussion about China!

      • Dave W

        To be fair, the Japanese was slammed by a triple whammy of disasters, the tsunami, the nuclear reactor and the Thailand flood. That gave the Koreans an almost unfair advantage.

        I said ALMOST because the Japanese had also been resting on their laurels and became complacent. They stopped pushing the envelope like they used to in the 80s and 90s. They just play it safe and rely on their reputation. Because of that, only a few cars from Japan are worth talking about.

        I sincerely hope that Toyota had finally kickstarted the Japanese rennaisance with the 86/BRZ. Otherwise, I’d be happy to buy Korean.

        • Sumpguard

          To be fair ,the onslaught started prior to the Tsunami , nuclear reactor failure and the Thai floods.

              Toyota didn’t start dropping their prices due to natural disasters. They did it in response to a direct threat from Korea.  A threat that the president of Toyota readily acknowledges.

               You mostly nailed it when you said they have become complacent however in Toyota’s case they became arrogant too. They also dropped the ball with reliability whilst the Koreans were building their reputation for it.   

          • Dave W

            I totally agree with you about the Korean “onslaught” prior to the disasters. That said, the disaster combo must’ve ruined whatever plan the Japanese might have to counter it.

            I disagree with what you said about Toyota dropping the ball with reliability. I know the line is blurred somewhat, but in my opinion, Toyota’s issue was their quality control on certain parts of their cars, not the overall reliability.

            Anyway, there’s one area where Korea is still weak, car dynamics. Unlike the Japanese, the Koreans don’t have a long history of motorsports, nor have they built any truly great sports car. And it shows on their car steering/handling.

            If the Japanese are smart, they can use that to hit back at the Koreans. Get active again in motorsports, make great sports cars and build brand loyalty. But if they let the Koreans catch up, they’re screwed.

          • Ace

             Take the Veloster Turbo for a spin and you’ll change your mind.

        • Edward

          Its a shame that these Japanese companies have become so lazy and complacent. I’ve owned Honda’s for the last 9 years, but i have to look elsewhere for my next car because it will be years before they improve.

          With the development cycle in the car industry being so long, you think they would know better than that. A bad restaurant can improve in weeks. A car company will need years.

          The situation is awkward now because companies like Toyota and Honda who have admitted fault need time to change. What remains to be seen is whether their customers will hang around with companies like Kia and Hyundai driving so hard at the market.

          It’s now a test of loyalty from here.

        • Phunken

          I love my jap cars over bad experience with several euros. But looking at Kia for my next upgrade which something I never do few yrs ago. But I truly believe that the Koreans (meaning Kia/Hyundai, not Daewoo) are injecting life back to the car industry, the Japanese where doing nothing since the early 00 and seriously creating cars no one like, we have to thank the Korean injecting some healthy competition and quirky design (eg Veloster) back into the scene something the Japanese owned back in the day at an affordable price that younger buyers care about to buy… No one talk about WRX or Evo or GTi anymore like they were household names back in the 90s. Toyota react to the Koreans by creating the cool 86 distancing themself from the Koreans lack of sportiness and sporting heritage, the Corolla look more hip and not bloated like before, Honda tried something new with the CRZ and upcoming Jazz based SUV that look like a shrunken CRV for the urban scene. Nissan is well failing with more boring US base products like the reborn badge Pulsar… Mazda is doing what Mazda always done, and Mitsu is going backward with blander design in the future.

      • F1orce

        The impressive thing about S.Koreans is their speed in product development and in doing their usual business. They’re strong competitors.

        I think if China tries rivalling S.Korea they’ll have a much harder time than what S.Korea had with rivalling Japan..

        Just look at Samsung, they just seem to go on and on and on…
        Very good management and decision making from S.Korean corporations.

    • Norm

      Revolutionary might refer to what he has done for KIA in terms of their designs – hence his promotion?

      If not just at KIA then for the look of the cars at that price point?There is no denying that he has overseen a very good looking bunch of cars. It wasn’t that long ago when KIA sponsored the Australian Open and the cars on display in the advertisements were…well…not exactly an advertisement for the game. Look how much he’s changed that market perception.

      In terms of dynamics – if you look at their recent gains – one or two model cycles an they’ll be more than good enough for most – and they come with long warranties.

      My only question is this – I’m sure he’s the hero at KIA right now but does a great designer a great President make? 

      Time will tell – but KIA are poised for for a big decade.

  • Edward

    When I’m stuck in traffic, i always enjoy admiring the new Kia’s. So as far as I’m concerned, he is making the roads a better looking place.

    Not sure i would own one, but they are certainly moving up my list

    • Peter

      You should see Seoul.  The roads are full of very late model Kias and Hyundais, you barely see a japanese or western car there.  It looks pretty flash

      • Martin

        When we were there, the tour guide said it is about a 75% make up of Korean brands (Hyundai, KIA, Ssangyong, Samsung) due to national pride (apparently they are heavily encouraged to be patriotic) and to some extent the unfair advantaged on import tariffs that are placed on imports. In addition, there still exists an anti-Japan sentiment among the older (dying out) generations that were subjected to the horrors from the Japanese Invasion. Funnily enough the same generation is still quite fond of Australians for providing support to the Koreans.

  • Drive

    Keep up the technological innovation along with the stylish designs and Kia will be a force of the manufacturing future.

  • The Real Wile E

    Why do the Koreans need a Euro look to be successful?.

    • Phunken

      Have u seen their previous work?