When Laurens van den Ackers left Mazda he said he was leaving to “pursue other interests,” making it sound like he was leaving the automotive design world completely as several other notable designers have done recently. However, van den Ackers has resurfaced at another car company, France’s Renault.
Van den Ackers “other interests” now seem to lie with trying to leave his mark with another brand, Renault, as he will replace Patrick le Quément as head of Renault design later this year.
Patrick le Quément has been with Renault for 22 years and is currently Senior Vice President of Renault Coporate Design. He is leaving the company on October 30, 2009 when Laurens van den Ackers will replace him as the Senior Vice President of Renault Corporate Design. Van den Ackers joins the French company May 15th, but does not become the new head of design until le Quément leaves.
The news of this change is only one of many recent shuffles in the automotive design world. Stephen Mattin, Volvo’s chief designer left recently. Camillo Pardo, Ford designer responsible for the GT, left the company. And Chris Bangle, head of BMW design left the automotive design world. The latter two designers left to “pursue endeavors outside the automotive world.”