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Crewe, 9 February 2012: Internationally acclaimed designer David Hilton has been appointed Head of Exterior Design for Bentley Motors Ltd. After 12 years running his own successful design firm, Hilton moves to Crewe in the UK reporting to Bentley’s Director of Design and Styling Dirk van Braeckel.
Hilton has over two decades experience within automotive design having worked with a wide variety of global companies. Award winning projects for a range of European and Japanese brands established his reputation and helped the companies attract new customers. Prior to this, Hilton worked at Ford for many years in both Detroit and Germany as well as a spell with Mazda in Japan. A former Chief Designer at Ford Racing, he also has experience within the Volkswagen Group having been a designer at VW Autolatina in Brazil.
Announcing Hilton's appointment, Dirk van Braeckel commented:
“With such vast experience and creative design talent, David will be a huge asset to the team at Crewe. His proven creative excellence will undoubtedly help us build on our current highly successful model line-up and enhance the appeal of Bentley cars to our customers world-wide.
"I am looking forward to working with him.”
“I am thrilled to be joining Bentley at this exciting time. Bentley has a distinctive design language which reflects the history and heritage of the Brand but remains relevant to today’s high luxury customers. This is a tremendous privilege and opportunity and I hope I can draw on the passion that I know everyone associated with the marque shares and help shape the design of the next generation of Bentleys.”
Hilton replaces Raul Pires who left Bentley at the end of 2011 to join the VW-owned Italian design house Italdesign.
Notes to editors
1. Bentley Motors is the third largest R&D investor in the UK's automotive sector and the 18th largest nationally. The company employs almost 4,000 people in Crewe which is home to all its operations including design, R&D, engineering and production. The combination of fine craftsmanship, using skills that have been handed down through generations, alongside engineering expertise and cutting-edge technology is unique to UK luxury vehicle manufacturers such as Bentley. It is also an example of high-value British manufacturing at its best. Bentley exports over £500m worth of goods every year to established markets like the US, as well as emerging markets such as China and South America.
2. Bentley’s global sales for 2011 increased by 37% with 7,003 cars delivered. This growth was led by the Chinese region (1876 cars sold) with mainland China (excl. Hong Kong and Taiwan) up 104.17% (1664 cars). However, the Americas remains the biggest market for Bentley with 2,021 cars delivered (up 32%) in 2011. All major markets were up with Europe up by over a half, due mainly to high demand in Germany (up by nearly 90%). The UK market proved to be more challenging, but still saw an increase of over five per cent. The surge in sales was led by demand for the new Continental GT. Over one third of all Bentley sales in 2011 were GTs with 2404 delivered. December 2011 was Bentley’s best month since the recession and the second highest ever, boosted by the first deliveries of the new soft-top Continental GTC. We have ambitious but realistic plans to continue this growth in 2012.
For further information about this press release please contact:
Michael Baumann – Communications Director
Michael.Baumann@Bentley.co.uk + 44 (0) 1270 535 189
Mike Hawes – Director, Corporate & Government Affairs
Mike.Hawes@bentley.co.uk +44 1270 535 287