Holden Celebrates the Art of Design

There are few design objects as complex and sophisticated as the car. As a product that must deliver aesthetic appeal in all light and weather conditions, on the move or stationary, and in sunshine and moonlight, getting it right is a challenge for the even the most talented designers.

But when they do get it right, the car in question is destined to become an enduring classic, lauded for its lines, it surfaces and the emotive appeal that it delivers.

Such classics not only appeal to automotive aficionados but also art and design lovers who appreciate their beauty and are often as equally celebrated in art galleries and museums as they are on the road or racetrack.

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Holden’s 2005 EFIJY concept is a classic example with the car recently celebrating its 10th birthday and continuing to receive global acclaim.

As the centrepiece of this year’s Shifting Gear exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria, the EFIJY – originally created as a tribute to the famous 1950s FJ Holden – is a prime showcase of the design talent at Holden that will continue to create new models for GM worldwide from its design studio in Port Melbourne well into the future.

The original development of the EFIJY was championed by now Holden Design Director, Richard Ferlazzo who says its position at the front of the gallery indicated its ongoing importance, appeal and connection with Australian car and art fans alike.

“The NGV’s Shifting Gear exhibition blended car design and art beautifully and paid tribute to the wealth of talent we have in automotive design in Australia,” Ferlazzo says.

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“EFIJY is a very sincere expression of design and perfectly demonstrates the world class capabilities of our talented design team, who were able to blend our exciting future with our enviable heritage.”

The reaction to the EFIJY from around the world over the years has been outstanding, with the 6.0-litre V8 hotrod picking up multiple awards including US magazine HOT ROD’s “2006 Hot Rod of the Year” and the “North American Concept Car of the Year” at the 2007 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

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And it doesn’t stop there, with Holden’s design studio continuing to create award-winning concepts for General Motors worldwide operations.

“As recently as January at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, GM revealed two concepts created by our GM Australia Design studio; the Chevrolet Bolt and the Buick Avenir. The Buick took two awards at this prestigious show, including Best Concept Vehicle,” Ferlazzo says.

While Holden will cease manufacturing operations in Australia in 2017, the Holden Design Centre will continue to be an integral part of General Motor’s global business.

“Creating exciting global concept cars for GM remains a core part of our business going forward,” Ferlazzo says.

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December 2015IN THIS ISSUE