Jaguar design boss scores automotive icon award

Ian Callum will accept an award at The London Classic Car Show next year in recognition of his design work over the decades, including the Ford RS200 and Aston Martin DB7

When people clap eyes on a handsome new car, it’s often the brand on the bonnet that gets all of the recognition. However, long before this beautiful shape was forged in metal, a designer had to bring it to life on paper over hundreds or even thousands of hours. Ian Callum has been responsible for the way many iconic models of the past few decades look, and at the 2018 London Classic Car Show he is to be honoured with an award.

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The London Classic Car Show Icon Award will be collected in person by Ian Callum at the ExCel, London where he will be officially recognised for his design expertise. There will also be a Q&A session for the public to ask the man about his career in cars.

The Scottish automotive designer is currently the Director of Design at Jaguar, but he has worked for many manufacturers over the years. He spent a long stint at Ford from 1979 to 1990, where he helped shaped the legendary RS200 Group B rally car — quite the car to have a connection to.

Callum left Ford to join TWR Design, which in turn allowed him to pen designs for multiple manufacturers including Aston Martin, Nissan, Mazda, and Volvo. Some of his most memorable designs come from this era including those of the beautiful Aston Martin DB7 and Vanquish.

The DB7 is a particular triumph as it’s credited with being the car that saved Aston Martin from bankruptcy at the time. Callum even turned his hand to racing cars with Nissan’s R390 project in 1997.

Jaguar’s designer Geoff Lawson passed away in 1999 and Ian Callum was offered the job of replacing him. In a way Callum was always destined for Jaguar as aged just 14, he submitted a car design to the luxury brand in the hope of getting a job. Cars such as the XK, XF, and C-X75 highlighted his talents at Jaguar. Today he is responsible for the entire Jaguar portfolio including the marque’s forward thinking I-Pace all-electric car.

Ian’s fascination with cars sparked at age three, sighting a Porsche 356 and quizzing his grandfather as to what this alien shape was. His love of cars continued and he distinctly remembers his grandfather taking him down to a dealership to see his first Jaguar E-type in 1961.

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