It’s no secret that BMW’s current design language is divisive and polarizing—to say the least. The kidney grille thing didn’t start with the 4 Series—just look at the current 7 Series, X7, and X5 to name a few—the Internet has not been kind in its reception of the latest development. Nevertheless, the vertically-oriented kidney grille design is set to continue on forthcoming models like the M3, M4, i4, and others.
Adrian van Hooydonk is Design Director for the BMW Group. He isn’t directly credited with the design of the aforementioned models with the controversial new kidney grille design (Lim Seung-mo is the designer of the new 4 Series and i Vision Dynamics concept), but the buck stops at van Hooydonk’s desk—and someone recently reminded him through some sarcastic edits made to his Wikipedia page.
The errors have since been corrected, but not before a handful of screenshots of them made it to social media. We can thank Jason Cammisa for sharing them via his Instagram account.
As you can see, the edits are downright savage, in modern vernacular, and make no bones about how some of us most certainly feel about BMW’s current design direction. This isn’t the first time we’ve heard BMW’s large vertical kidney grilles compared to rodent teeth, but the complaints lodged against van Hooydonk go further. Whoever made the edits (which, once again, have since been corrected) suggests, whether in jest or not, that van Hooydonk is incompetent and lacks taste. He’s also accused of destroying BMW’s iconic front end design, along with the side profile.
We normally wouldn’t bother addressing such an occurrence—it’s not particularly difficult to edit Wikipedia pages of public figures that aren’t widely recognized politicians—but this time it’s a bit different. Here’s the thing; although these edits were made as a joke, as with anything humorous, there’s a bit of truth at work in this scenario. As we’ve addressed on this site numerous times, it’s widely accepted that people aren’t particularly big fans of the way modern BMW models look.
Where do you stand? Are the comments directly on point, or are they a step too far? If you’re looking for more context, here’s a YouTube video (which also features Jason Cammisa) that digs a little deeper into the current state of the BMW brand.—Alex Tock
[Photos courtesy BMW AG, Jason Cammisa on Instagram.]