Published on April 24th, 2023 | by Sounder Rajen0
McLaren Hires Tobias Suhlmann As New Chief Design Officer
McLaren brings back the ex Bentley design boss to its brand
British luxury automaker McLaren, needs no introduction. The brand has made some of the most desirable and beautiful cars such as the iconic P1 and the Senna. The brand is known for many things and design is probably one of the most notable, now the brand has just hired Tobias Suhlmann as its new Chief Design Officer.
Why is this important news? Well, Suhlmann used to be the design boss at Bentley, yes, British ultra-luxury marque, Bentley which he left McLaren for in 2021. This means that effective September 2023, Suhlmann will officially return to McLaren and I can’t wait to see how future McLaren models will look now.
Moreover, Suhlmann is no slouch in the world of automotive design either as he has a successful career in automotive design spanning over two decades, having worked for several renowned luxury brands such as Bentley, Bugatti, and Aston Martin as well. All of these brands have built beautiful cars.
The appointment marks a return to McLaren for Suhlmann, who was previously the Chief Designer for Special Projects and will also involve him working closely with customers to create bespoke designs for their vehicles, which will then be hand-built in the adjacent McLaren Production Center.
As the new McLaren Chief Design Officer, Suhlmann will now be based in Surrey, where he will be responsible for leading a design team that handles every aspect of brand design. This will include future concepts, exterior and interior styling, color and materials, and personalization of vehicles for customers.
On top of that, Suhlmann began his career in automotive design in 2005, after graduating with a diploma from Pforzheim University. He worked at Volkswagen before moving on to become Head of Exterior Design at Bugatti and then at Aston Martin. This gave him a lot of good experience.
He then joined McLaren as the Chief Designer for Special Projects from October 2020 to September 2021, before becoming Bentley’s Director of Design before returning to McLaren. In his new role, Suhlmann will report directly to Michael Leiters, the Chief Executive Officer of McLaren Automotive.
Leiters said, “We are delighted to welcome Tobias to the McLaren team. He is a highly experienced automotive designer with an existing understanding of McLaren having previously worked on our ground-breaking Solus GT project. Tobias will play a leading role in developing McLaren’s new design language across our developing product portfolio as part of our Future of Performance business strategy.”
What do you guys think about Suhlmann’s return to McLaren? Are you as excited as I am to see what he does with the brand’s future products? I just hope that with news of the brand not doing too well lately, I hope this move turns it around.