Shanghai (Gasgoo)- On September 8, Great Wall Motor (GWM) announced that its head of design Pierre Leclercq resigned. In that notice, GWM gave gratitude to Leclercq for his contribution to the automaker. It said that Leclercq helped to introduce many wonderful products and laid great foundation for China’s first luxury SUV brand WEY.
Only a week later, Kia Motors said it had named Leclercq as its new head of styling and will be responsible for developing Kia’s long-term design strategy. Before joining GWM, Leclercq has worked in BMW for fourteen years. It is his unique insight into global vehicle design that made Kia believe he will help reinforce Kia’s design identity in the coming years.
As to Leclercq’s departure from GWM and new role in Kia, it is said workers in GWM were surprised and a little angry, but they can’t clarify details. Besides, GWM has said that there won’t be any comment on this issue any more. According to a local media, two reasons may account for Leclercq’s resignation. The first one is that Kia offers a generous salary which is likely twice of what GWM offered. The other is that Leclercq does not like life in Baoding, GWM’s headquater, that much.
During his stay in GWM, Leclercq helped to reshape Haval brand’s SUV products and establish the design DNA across the whole Haval’s series. When GWM was trying to launch the luxury brand WEY, Leclercq was also an important player. Ever since hitting the market, WEY’s VV7 model had a good sales performance. In August, its sales reached 7,197 units. New design and product positioning may explain its popularity.
With Leclercq’s leaving, some questions arose. For example, what kind of effect does his leaving have on the entire designing team? Will GWM be able to continue its design concept? Maybe what GWM need to do is to find an equally qualified designer.
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