Audi designer Stefan Sielaff moves to Volkswagen to head its design center

Article by Christian Andrei, on December 22, 2011

Starting on Feb. 1, Volkswagen AG’s design center in Potsdam, Germany, will be overseen by 49-year-old Stefan Sielaff, who is the current head of Audi design. Sielaff is the replacement for Thomas Ingenlath, who is leaving the company. In addition, Sielaff will head VW's group interior design. He will be directly reporting to Walter de Silva, VW’s group design chief.

Sielaff's responsibilities at Audi will be assumed by Wolfgang Egger, Audi's head of group design. In 1990, Sielaff joined VW group as one of Audi’s interior designers. He was tasked to head VW's design studio in Munich in 1997. In 2003, he transferred from VW to DaimlerChrysler, where served as the interior design director. In 2006, he went back to 2006 to be Audi’s design cheap.

He had played a major role in creating Audi's distinctive look (like the use of LED lights for example) and in shaping the identity of the brand. Several show cars were inspired by this vision, including the Audi e-tron Spyder and the A2 e-tron. The company said that he also influenced the development of the Audi A6 and A8.

With a look to possibly redesigning its entire catalogue, Audi has started with their flagship executive model first. This vehicle, which is sportier and lighter, has remained the same size and comes with a flood of new technology for all the assistance and multimedia systems. It has proven eye-popping at first glance.

It wouldn't be Audi if there weren't a series of options and modifications available and the range currently includes everything from engines to drivetrains.

Technological achievements have meant that the designers were able to produce the fuel economy you would expect from a four-cylinder engine and mix that with all the gusto and roar you get from a V6 engine.

This combination can be seen in the new Audi A6 Hybrid which will undoubtedly be the pride of place in the initial lineup.

With a body of mostly aluminum and high tensile steel, the A6 will be an incredibly light car and is one which is exceedingly safe and stiff in the event of a collision.

The same advancements in technology which have meant designers have improved fuel economy have also been able to work on the Audi's interior. Through a clever combination of materials and superior methods, they have reduced the noise levels and improved comfort by custom-designing a number of components to dampen the hydraulics, the axle and the drivetrain bearings.

Always an elegant piece of engineering, the new A6 is just as athletic as previous iterations, if not more so. Coming in at under 5m, (4.92) which is just over 16 feet in length and 1.87 m in width (6.14 ft), the new Audi is just 1.46 m (4.79ft) high which if you were to compare it to other models reveals how dynamic this sedan is.

This dynamism can be seen in the profile of the vehicle with its low roofline, elongated hood and exaggerated lines upon the flanks, all of which combine to give it a striking appearance. There is also the option to include LED headlights to add to the overall effect.

A genuinely comfortable and spacious interior greets you when you climb inside the A6. With a degree of wrap-around, it has an inlay which folds around the driver and front-seat passenger and a dashboard which combines sophistication and manages to put the driver in the middle of the interior.

Utmost care is a phrase which springs to mind when seated in the A6. You can see this authenticity in the design work they do with the way the wood veneer echoes the elegance.

This commitment can be seen in every element of the A6. It proves how much they care and have chosen to invest when it comes to designing and fulfilling those design promises. And you can see these promises in the options such as massage and ventilation functions on the front seats and dots of light available as ambient lighting throughout the vehicle.

Topics: audi, vw, design

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