|BMW fan wearing "CHRIS BANGLE SUXX" |
T-shirt at the Nordschleife in 2005
But for the most part I think Chris Bangle brought the most unattractive aspects of american car design to the 3- and 5-series BMW. The design language you want to strive for in a technically minded german car is efficiency and power. You want the bodywork of the car to look like tight skin being stretched over athletic muscle.
Bangle went for a bloated, obese-looking design. Lots of voluminous plastic body parts to uselessly add volume where none was called for. Not even the Gehry'esque use of curved surfaces could make up for the fact that the cars looked like they had been eating lard and putting on weight. The flame-surfacing just made the cars look ridiculous -- like people who get butt implants, fake abs and oversized pecs, but who are too lazy to acquire actual muscle tone.
These past days I've been seeing lots of expensive new beemers -- and they have started looking somewhat decent again. They have their athletic looks back. None of that bulging american nonsense.