Karim Habib Leaves Infiniti for Kia, to Head Design Center

One of the most talented present-day automotive designers, Karim Habib, has just been hired by Kia to head the South Korean's design center, and was given the role of senior vice president of the company. Habib was until this week the head of design for Nissan's luxury brand, Infiniti.
Karim Habib, new head of Kia Design Center 6 photos
Photo: Kia
Infiniti Prototype 10Infiniti Prototype 10Infiniti Prototype 10Infiniti Prototype 10Infiniti Prototype 10
The new Kia executive is to take office in October, and he will be based in Namyang, North Korea. According to the carmaker, he will be tasked with designing the exterior and interior of future Kia cars, and he will also have a say in the colors and materials chosen for them.

The division he will lead is responsible for all Kia models, from conceptualization and modeling to styling and development of color and materials.

"SVP Habib will be an asset for the Kia brand with his international background and global experience," said in a statement Habib's new boss, Kia's design chief Luc Donckerwolke.

"We highly appreciate Karim's talent and experience. He is joining Kia at a crucial moment to project the brand into the future of mobility and to reinforce the young-spirited and motivated design team which has won numerous international design awards."

Habib has made a mark on the auto industry after working for BMW and Infiniti. During his career at the Bavarians, which started in 1998, he was responsible for the creation of cars such as the 7 Series F01, X6, X3, and 6 Series Gran Coupe.

For a brief time, he was employed by rival Mercedes, where he helped create the Mercedes-Benz F800 concept car.

His most recent appointment was with Infiniti. While on the Japanese payroll, he designed some extreme concepts like the Prototype 10 Speedster, Q Inspiration sedan and QX Inspiration SUV.

Infiniti did not say who will replace the man in which the company placed such high hopes for the future.
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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