Report: Jaguar’s Design Guru is Stepping Down After 20 years
“Time for a new adventure.”
Ian Callum has spent the last 20 years revolutionizing modern car design, but according to his Instagram feed, he’s ready for a “new adventure.” On Monday, July 1, 2019, he will step down from his lead design role at Jaguar. Callum’s replacement, Julian Thomson, has worked alongside the famed Jaguar design boss for 18 years now, so the company is expecting a smooth transition of creative power.
Before starting with Jaguar 20 years ago, Callum had already established himself as an elite auto designer. So, expectations were high as he arrived at Jaguar in 1999 with the Ford Puma and Aston Martin DB7 already on his resume, but he exceeded those expectations immensely in due time.
When Callum first arrived at Jaguar, his mission was to reimagine the heritage styling that defined the luxury brand during its early years. His first project with Jaguar was a concept car known as the R-Coupe, which provided him with the framework for his first series of production cars.
Callum had always been drawn to Jaguar’s progressive design style since before he could drive. He tapped into the radical look of Jaguar’s early models as a source of inspiration when designing the now famous XJ saloon, which still feels progressive even 10 years later as it’s phasing out of production. Ultimately, Callum’s career with Jaguar is defined by his progressive, yet disruptive design style.
The Future Leader of Jaguar
Julian Thompson, Callum’s successor as head designer at Jaguar, started his career at Ford before moving onto Lotus to serve as the head of their design team. After a successful stint with Lotus, Thompson brought his talents to Volkswagen’s Concept Design Centre, where he served as Chief of Exteriors until finally transitioning to Jaguar in 2000 to work alongside Callum.
Here at AutohausAZ, it almost goes without saying that Jaguar will be just fine in the hands of Julian Thompson. He’s been working with Ian Callum for 18 years, so it’s not as if Jaguar will have to bring him up to speed. Besides, Callum recently announced that he would stay involved with the Jaguar design process as a design consultant.
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