The Designer of the First X5 Shows How He did it

by Member - Evanwritescars on June 4, 2020, 3:00 pm

There's not much cooler than hearing about how a vehicle's stying came about. Especially when it's directly from the person responsible and even more so when they're no longer with that company and can be a little more candid than they would be under the corporate thumb.

Frank Stephenson designed the new Mini Cooper, the Ferarri FXX and F430, and the modern Fiat 500, before heading to McLaren to create much of that company's current line of hypercars. Here, he talks about how the first-generation BMW X5 came to be, BMW's first sports utility (and yes, he says utility) vehicle.

"BMW's decision was that they'd love to see what a BMW Land Rover could look like," Stephenson says, a nod to it being built on a platform that came with the acquisition of Land Rover.

Stephenson talks about how under the direction of Chris Bangle, he went from blank paper to full-size model in just six weeks because that's what the bosses wanted.

In his hand sketches, you can see a bit more of the Range Rover influence, but then watch the Hofmeister Kink come into play and then the rest of the now-iconic shape come to life.

It's also fascinating to watch him delicately shade and sketch using just a basic black Bic pen.

And if that hooks you, watch his other videos that include the McLaren P1, the Mini Cooper, and how he penned one of the most iconic spoilers of all time. The triplane rear of the Ford Escort Cosworth RS.


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