McLaren has appointed Rob Melville as the company’s new Design Director, replacing Frank Stephenson who decided to leave the company. Rumour has it that Stephenson is heading back to MINI where he served as Chief Designer at the company until 2002.
Rob joined McLaren Automotive in 2009 as Senior Designer, rising to Chief Designer in 2014. During his time at McLaren, Rob has worked on the McLaren P1, the evolution of the 12C into the 650S, the 675LT, and was responsible for the Sports Series which won the ‘Best of the Best’ category in the coveted Red Dot design awards in 2016. Most recently he led the design of the 720S, the first model in the second-generation Super Series.
As Design Director, his new role makes Rob responsible for further developing the company’s design strategy, philosophy and principles working with the engineering and manufacturing functions, as well as the customer insights team. Another 14 new models or derivatives are promised under the Track22 business plan.
Rob commented, “I am thrilled to be given the title of Design Director for McLaren Automotive. I remember when I got the call to come and join McLaren back in 2009 and the joy I felt then is the same today. We have developed a fantastic design team and have integrated a design philosophy that I feel passionately about. I have always believed that great design tells a great story and that is what we do here at McLaren. I’m incredibly proud.”
Prior to McLaren, Rob started his career at Jaguar Land Rover where his sketches and clay were chosen for the LRX Concept Vehicle which led to the Evoque production car. He later joined GM as Senior Designer within their UK Advanced Design Group. As a key part of the creative team he was responsible for evolving and realising the Cadillac design principles and philosophy across the product portfolio, including the Cadillac Converj project.