Bmw Group, Rolls Royce, Robert. Ross discussed on Cars That Matter
Robert. Ross with cars the matter and I'm here this afternoon with my guest Andrea Sterner greetings. Andreas Hi Robyn. Thank you very much for having me. there's GonNa be fun. Andreas is with Karma Automotive in Irvine California and has been there since two thousand sixteen. Now now he's the vice president of global design and architecture but I know before that there were some interesting goings on with Rolls Royce and BMW of a lot of history. There there you graduated from four time in in Germany the university in with transportation degree in two thousand and four is that right. That is correct. Yes but you leapfrog right. Go Away into an important job. You went to Rolls Royce. Yeah I was twenty five years old and basically no experience as a professional cars. I did my internship during the studies ladies with BMW Group in advance design was then invited to come back and do my finest thesis so the theme of my final thesis was the spirit of BMW W. Luxury in the future. I was fascinated by finding out. What was the spirit? Like of Denali class the seventies and what was all about and what is is the meaning for that for the future should any meaning be and so I wanted to find out instead a unique way of BMW way of doing this of challenging. That what I did I. I reached out how to this designers of that period I reached out to Manfred Renan to pope. Rock to boycott Boyer tried to arrange meetings with them board a nice bottle of wine. I'm always a good way to get the conversation about cars going exactly Asked them if I could visit them in their houses they were older gentlemen. They were happy to invite me into talk about the past. So what made that special y did they work. What was different to established companies at that time Macedo Macedo was established? Talk about like W was really the underdog it was the underdog they were basically not. Let's not a startup but the challenge for sheriff smallest symbols like they I recall they said you know we all heads short arm shirts. We did wear ties guys Mercedes would or ties and jackets and so on they saw at BMW there were very few people very small teams. You knew exactly recluse by first name. Who was responsible for dynamics who was responsible for this and that so you knew responsible for some very beautiful cars? Yeah yeah it's hard to imagine something more perfect as an exercise in economy and efficiency than the BMW two thousand two or something more beautiful than a three point O. CSL S. l.. Absolutely and then you listen and you hear about this more stories in the Vintana what he did in order to challenge the fords and so on. It's amazing voice. I was inspiring for me and then of course you heard not only the attitude holiday interacted. How fast how? They will how they describe the products like tailored suit just enough. Never never more than just in us. That's right perfect an understatement but under statement. That was absolutely right anyway. This was probably my start into something of a little bit more meaningful Karazin and really trying to bring the point across. Okay one can make a difference by showing that they are different approaches. My model was shown at BMW to the board. The board came down into designed to saw to see to review my Ska- more love the seven series. You know that never happened before. And I was then asked to present my I model to the group design chiefs of you know many hildebrand at that time in Cameron Roy's right and of course the at the time I'm Chris Bangle was in charge of things at BMW and Christina was leading. That so I was. I recall when I presented that was even before presented. If it's in our school and I was so worn out or sober out. I couldn't even think of any like CV or application. Or even fact I. I didn't want him to work in that industry at all. Because I was just tired I was just out I. I hadn't even started yet so I I already had an application go in go into Israel for one year and two keyboards ought to go the other application I had was to go on the boat and Netherlands for year and just play Guitar Karen. Just you know every everybody's dream but then Justin this presentation three or four of the different brands chiefs Give me a business card and one of them said we should talk. That's he and Cameron of course former design director at at Rolls Royce motorcars. And we've had in on the show and what a fascinating character is. I guess a bit of a mentor to you. Obstacle the mentor and And that's the thing one of the most inspiring people in this industry industry. Yeah later got different opportunities but really in brought his team around that same time. This was a small Rolls Royce Team within BMW. I'm W that was kind of bird special. Nobody saw them really. They were in their own corners and like the elite they just launched defend sent them some years ago debt Kearns by me and saga car that matters epcot at meadows so defendthem is thought such would not at all be possible anymore and and I was a student so that had a big impact. Still it was so far away for me. I would have never dreamed into applying there again. to work there was just too far away. So when in then protest team around and said can you wait and you know he proceeds Merrick Georgia rich and Dean Smith and Charles called him. America was responsible for the exterior of the Phantom. My right Merrick was the suspension design. And of course set the tone for the future of Ross with his styling emphasis this with with this feeling as well but everybody there was just so warmhearted and saw impressed by the approach. Not Everything the thing that I did for my thesis was wonderful a perfect when I looked today. The sketch don't even want to look at. The sketches artist is his own worst critic but I remember when when Ian I met in again for the interview and the first thing he said I mean by first name directly. Of course he's British so there's no worry about zero. Do Not know about Zine do and I remember that he said in one. He said to one of the other team members in the very beginning that he hired me because he liked my is. This is just. It's just. It was different I was just not about not about I had as well offers. Where would have earned in the beginning more more money but with I didn't even ask I didn't I didn't even know what we're going to earn right? It was just like oh it was just an honor. TASTIC will obviously we want to talk about what's happening at Karma and how a lot of these past experiences of yours and the great the depth of knowledge gained with BMW and Rolls Royce of kind of informed. Your notions of luxury with the new company. But you know let's go back before we kinda jump into Karma and talk about for a minute some of the things that really inspired you know I I had a chance to look could you with your portfolio and obviously the drawing is remarkable a lot of car designers quote unquote obviously have some great executive skills. This with the Pencil or the pin but drawing obviously something. That's really important to you and you have an art background and maybe WanNa talk about that for a moment. I think that very few designers have a fine art background and to me it seems like a rare connection that informs designer in a way that that would not otherwise be so informed. Yon Sketching Design means a lot for me even before I could probably articulate in any other way over sketching all the time my parents have four boys and they hey tell even when I was two three years old I was getting all the time to all the others later when I was in kindergarten and then in school I was asked by my older brothers us to sketch their homework when they were when they were back. In High School or IM- University. I did some art projects for them. They said it was the way were again. Ingress backed from our orders but it was very special this story as well let I love to sketch so much and then kindergarten teacher. Who who who let me do that right I I? Usually they're yelling at you. Young man put the pencil down and listen to this history lesson notice. This is actually really reason why why we decided. Here's as we're in California. Our boy goes to a while of kindergarten because he can be being created if this is the the best education you can have the academic education starts..