Ex-Jaguar designer Julian Thomson moves to GM
Julian Thomson, the former head of Jaguar design who left Jaguar Land Rover in May 2021, is to lead General Motors’ new UK-based European Advanced Design studio, which is due to open by the end of this year. Thomson, who previously worked for Lotus and was responsible for the Elise S1 of 1996, will head up a staff of around 35. With GM having little representation in Europe since its sale of the Vauxhall and Opel brands in 2017, the European Advanced Design studio’s influence will be more far-reaching.
Thomson has reportedly been studying GM’s product range since January, although his appointment has been kept secret until now. He is said to be an admirer of the latest design developments at Cadillac, although his dream is to take on the styling of a future-generation Corvette. According to specialist press reports, Thomson will be working on GM projects for the USA, Korea and China: “We will be a kind of think-tank and contribute to everything that happens inside the mother ship.” Julian Thomson stepped down as head of Jaguar design at the end of May 2021. Before taking on the role of design chief, he’d spent 18 years working alongside Ian Callum to redefine Jaguar styling leading the team responsible for the RD6, R Coupe and C-XF concepts.
Thomson was a significant figure in the reinvention of Jaguar design