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Teased | Opel Design Future | Part 2

Part1Rüsselsheim. While Opel is working hard on becoming a highly efficient automotive company within Groupe PSA as announced by Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller during the presentation of the PACE! strategic plan last November, it is also busy strengthening and fine-tuning its profile. Before the end of the year, a Brand Concept vehicle currently being created in the design studio will show where Opel is heading to.

“PACE! is the compass to a sustainable and successful future for Opel”, said Michael Lohscheller. “In addition to increasing profitability and efficiency, PACE! includes the strengthening of the Opel brand. I have therefore given my teams the tasks of sharpening Opel’s profile and creating a concept car that symbolizes the direction we are headed.”

German, approachable, exciting – these are the three brand values that are embedded in the DNA of every Opel model and initiative and will continue to do so in the future. In recent months, Opel design, marketing and engineering teams have been finding answers to the question how these values can be better embodied by the design, the technology, the substance of the Opel automobiles and the approach the company takes towards its customers. The team around Vice President Design Mark Adams has revisited Opel’s design philosophy and intends to apply some significant fine-tuning when creating the future bestsellers from Rüsselsheim. A first glimpse of what the future holds and what Opel models will look like by the mid-2020s has now been revealed – still hidden under a cover but already showing noteworthy details.

One element the design team was keen to take to a new level is how modern new ‘Germanness’ can be expressed in future products, thus sharpening the brand profile. “New Germanness means that we define ourselves not only based on traditional German values. Of course, engineering excellence, technical innovation and outstanding quality remain important to us. However, modern Germany is much more than this. We are open to the world, open-minded, and truly care about people – in German, this attitude is called ‘menschlich’ – human in a word. Our customers, wherever they live or come from, are our guideline and compass for everything we do,” explained Adams.

Two fundamental pillars of Opel’s future design philosophy are directly derived from this expression of new Germanness: ‘bold’ and ‘pure’. “Opel design is emotional, sculptural and confident, we create exciting designs that stand out. We summarised this with the term bold. A second key aspect of German design is its clarity, intuitiveness and focus. This is captured in the term pure,” explained Adams. Previous iconic designs from Opel’s past clearly relate to these qualities. One of the most stunning examples of this ‘bold’ and ‘pure’ principle is the Opel CD that wowed an international audience when it celebrated its world premiere at the 1969 Frankfurt Motor Show.

These key elements are also clearly visible in the most recent brainchild of the Rüsselsheim Design Centre – the critically acclaimed GT Concept. “Strong proportions, simple but sculptural surfaces, bold graphics, and rare but extremely well executed details – the 2018 Brand Concept we are preparing continues to develop the principles we explored with the GT Concept. There is a clear continuity and consistency in the way we express Opel’s values. However, we have taken several steps forward and are now setting the structure for the future face of Opel. This will be articulated around what we call the Opel Compass,” explained Adams. The Opel Compass organises the design elements of Opel’s future face around two strong axes that intersect the brand emblem – which becomes the focus point more than ever before. The centre-crease line on the bonnet represents the vertical axis, which will become bolder and purer in its execution. The horizontal axis is symbolized by the typical wing-shaped daytime running light signature, which will continue to be further strengthened and developed on all future Opel vehicles.

The 2018 Brand Concept, to be revealed before the end of the year, will be the first vehicle to showcase the future face of Opel designed according to the principles of the Opel Compass.

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