Ian Callum deems loss of Aussie manufacturing a “crying shame” in interview

By: Alex Affat, Unique Cars magazine

Ian Callum D type Ian Callum D type

Iconic international designer misses our home-grown heroes

Ian Callum is one of the most prodigious modern designers in the industry, and spent 11 years working at Ford – posted to various stations including a stint in Australia – and then went on to work for Tom Walkinshaw Racing as a design consultant for various project: numerous Aston Martins, Ford’s RS200, Nissan’s R390 and even had his hands in the 1996 HSV GTSR.

He retired recently as longstanding Head of Design at Jaguar Land Rover, after being with the conglomerate for 20 years.

In a recent interview with our brothers at Wheels Magazine, Callum displayed a worldly insight into car design, and made it clear he holds fond memories of working here in Melbourne during his tenure with Ford.

In speaking on the geographical influence on a country’s car design; Callum points out the vast landscape of America and Australia were factors in vehicle size.


Wheels states that there isn’t much good news about the Australian manufacturing industry, to which Callum exclaims: "The loss of the Australian car industry is a crying shame".

"I worked in Australia and did a lot of work in Melbourne. It’s such a great place to be."

He then goes on to point out his little brother, Moray Callum’s ties to Ford’s local design department as Vice President of Design at FoMoCo:  "I think my brother Murray’s insisting on keeping the Ford design studio there, so I’m glad to see that. They won’t go away".

But does the world-class designer think Australia’s global automotive contributions should be limited purely to design?

"You guys need a car industry back again. The population’s big enough to justify. The world’s a poorer place without a Holden or a Ford ute with a thumping great V8 in it".

Strong and proud words from one of the modern industry’s most influential designers. Do you guys reckon he speaks the truth, or did our beloved industry fold for a reason?

Read the full interview from Wheels Magazine, for a fantastic insight into all that goes into designing modern cars.


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