Amarok Designer now at Kia

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Former VW and BMW designer follows the current trend and heads East.

Kia has appointed a new vice president of interior design. Belgian, Jochen Paesen will be yet another European influence at the Korean car company, which has not been shy to buy-in the best available talent when required.

Paesen studied at the University of Coventry, completing a design degree, before attending the Royal College of Art. His portfolio is very strong, having served as an interior designer at both VW and of late, BMW.

If you are a Kia brand fan, Paesen’s appointment should be met with overwhelming approval and excitement. His responsibilities at BMW included interior design project leader for both the G11/12 7-Series (2015 - present) and the highly desirable M4 GTS. Paesen also contributed to the F12/13 6-Series (2011 - 2018) and oversaw the i8’s cabin.

What might excite South African Kia followers most, is what Paesen did at VW before his career transferred to BMW. From its launch back in 2010, the VW Amarok’s interior has remained unrivalled – and it was all the work of Jochen Paesen.

His class-leading experience with a bakkie cabin architecture might be one of the reasons that Kia hired Paesen. It could possibly give us a further indication that the Korean company is planning its own double-cab bakkie, to launch with Hyundai’s Santa Cruz.

Paesen is a dedicated car fanatic, regularly attending historic races and events, where he immerses himself in photography. He also produces sketches and artworks of classic racing and road cars, showing his immense appreciation for the legacy of legendary brand names and models in the automotive realm.

Open to multicultural design influences, Paesen spent his youth in Belgium, South Africa, France, England and the Netherlands.

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