Super Street Network

 |   |  Ian Callum Jaguar Car Designer - The Face Of Design
Subscribe to the Free
Newsletter

Ian Callum Jaguar Car Designer - The Face Of Design

Face of Design

Jesse - Alexander
Jul 18, 2004
Photographer: Jesse Alexander
Epcp_0407_01_z+ian_callum+photo Photo 1/1   |   Ian Callum Jaguar Car Designer - The Face Of Design

There can't have been very many newsstands in Dumfries, Scotland, that were displaying copies of Hot Rod back in 1964, but somehow Ian Callum (1954-) found one. It made him an enthusiast of the '32 Ford roadster, which is not the sort of thing one expects from the current director of styling at Jaguar.

Though his family didn't own a car, magazines like Hot Rod made Callum a car enthusiast. At age 10, he wrote a note to Bill Haines, Jaguar's long-time chief engineer, and included a few of his drawings of cars. Haines wrote back and provided some advice about the right kind of education for a future car designer. Callum's life was never the same again.

2018 Aston Martin Vanquish
$293,650 Base Model (MSRP) 13/21 MPG Fuel Economy

It would be a long time before Callum finally found his way to Jaguar, however. After studying industrial design in Scotland and acquiring a master's degree in automotive design from the Royal College of Art, he started his design career at Ford. After years of thankless work at Ford studios in Britain, the United States, Germany, Japan and Australia, Callum moved to Turin, Italy, and became the design manager at Ghia, which then functioned as Ford's most advanced styling studio. His Zig roadster and Zag van-let concept cars were the hits of the 1990 show-car season.

Weary of corporate design, Callum left Ford in 1991 to join TWR, an outfit led by racer (and fellow Scot) Tom Walkinshaw, which developed both racing cars and production cars for a variety of clients. Callum designed the Nissan R390 GT1 in 1998, which competed at Le Mans, but he became better known for the design of the 1995 Aston Martin DB7. This car had started life as a warmed-over facelift of the Jaguar XJS, but it was pushed aside when Ford took over Jaguar because it was too heavy. Jaguar designer Geoff Lawson created the XK8 (also a modified XJS) in its stead, yet the styling of the DB7 ultimately earned wider acclaim.

Ironically, Callum took over as Jaguar's design director in 1999 when Lawson died suddenly, and he helped bring Lawson's final designs to production, notably the 2003 XJ8.

Nevertheless, Callum's most important work during this time came with the introduction of the Vanquish V12, which created a gorgeous new styling vocabulary for Aston Martin.

When Callum arrived at Jaguar 5 years ago, he was charged with evolving a new look for the company, but it has taken a while to appear, because Lawson's retro-theme cars were just going into production. The future that Callum envisions for Jaguar is best seen in the R-D6 concept unveiled in Detroit this year, a high-speed four-door coupe with a diesel engine.

When I photographed Ian Callum, it was clear that he was a bit more than the usual college-educated car designer. He's a real car enthusiast who likes to drive fast and talk wildly about cars over a few beers. Apparently his brother Morey, a designer for Mazda, is much the same. Who would have guessed that there would ever be a Scottish car designer, much less two of them?

By Jesse - Alexander
1 Articles

BROWSE CARS BY MARKET

MORE FEATURES

Paul the Apostle wasn't necessarily talking about K-series-swapped Integras when he spoke to the Corinthians, telling them to "race to win."
Aaron BonkNov 20, 2018
Based on what Mini did with the 2006 Cooper S Works GP and the 2012 John Cooper Works GP, expect a small power bump and a punishingly firm ride.
Collin WoodardNov 20, 2018
Lamborghini debuted a racing version of the Urus that will hit the track in 2020
Kelly PleskotNov 20, 2018
As a general rule of thumb, most Ferrari owners leave their cars untouched in an effort to protect their resale value. But Ryan Dandurand isn't like most Ferrari owners
Jonathan WongNov 19, 2018
For 70 years, the Abarth emblem has been intimidating competitors in its various incarnations as a race car and performance road-car builder.
ManufacturerNov 19, 2018
Sponsored Links

SEARCH ARTICLES BY MAKE/MODEL

Search
CLOSE X
BUYER'S GUIDE
SEE THE ALL NEW
NEWS, REVIEWS & SPECS
TO TOP