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Wolfsburg, 28 December 2017

„Form follows freedom"

A personal review of 2017 with head of design, Klaus Bischoff

Klaus Bischoff started in 1989 with Volkswagen interior design. Since 2007 he is head of design of Volkswagen brand. These are his personal highlights in 2017:

"A new year will begin in just a few days. But before we take a look at the future of mobility, I would like to take some time to look back at 2017 – a year which marked the beginning of a new chapter in the automotive industry.

It is a pleasure and an honour to be responsible for Volkswagen Design at this decisive moment. We in Design are facing challenges for which there are no blueprints. We're back at square one with all manufacturers looking for answers to the same, game-changing question: what will the car of the future look like?

At the same time, design is becoming ever more important for models with a conventional drive system. They are the latest generation of an incredible legacy which mobilised entire nations. One of the most exciting tasks for me as a designer is to create designs in the present which will be realised in both the near and distant future. In this respect, two key moments shaped the past year for me.

Great anticipation for the new Golf

August, Spain. A glimpse into the future. The next Golf stands before us in the sunshine: cast in natural light, in a natural environment for the first time. With the reflection of the light, the sculpture of the vehicle comes to life after months of work. Seeing how strong and contemporary the design elements of the Golf still are, fills me both with great pleasure and a great sense of responsibility. The Golf, which seems to glide underneath the airflow with more sporting presence than ever before, is our benchmark for everything that is still to come. I am already looking forward to the day when we can present this generation of the Golf to our fans and customers.

January, Detroit Motor Show. Nearly one year ago, the I.D. BUZZ drove onto the stage. A project that has accompanied me for 15 years now stands full-scale in front of me. The rebirth of an icon. A vision has become reality! With the I.D. BUZZ, we know that we have a real highlight at the Motor Show. But we were not prepared for this level of enthusiasm.

At the Monterey Car Week which followed, I could sense this enthusiasm from the general public on the famous "17-Mile-Road".

Collectors with historic T1-busses made up our convoy. The past and the future are united in euphoria.

As much as the approaches to designing a new Golf and a new member of the I.D. family may differ- they both subscribe to the same philosophy, that of the freedom offered by individual mobility. In an age of technical perfection and near boundless opportunities, "form follows function" will become "form follows freedom". The automobile will not only become better, it will also be more exciting than ever before.

2017 was just the first step towards this incredibly exciting future. For now, I am looking forward to 2018 which will be no less exciting!"

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