Design4Production 2024 brought together industry leaders to explore the integration of design, engineering, and production in the automotive industry. This gallery showcases the event’s key moments, from insightful talks to innovative collaborations.  

In the opening session, Klaus Zyciora, Vice-President, Global Design, Changan, and Martin Uhlarik, Vice President of Global Design, Tata Motors along with CDN editor, James McLachlan discussed the importance of breaking down silos between design, engineering, and production. 

Follow our Design4Production blog to catch key insights and speaker quotes from the sessions. 

Martin Uhlarik points out that design and engineering teams have to work “in a circular” way. Zyciora added that the old game of the engineer telling the designer that something doesn’t look so great, is no longer the case. The process between engineering and design is now much more “co-creational.” 

The next session focused on creating eco-friendly vehicles and sustainability in automotive design and production. The panel had David Mason, Design Operations Director, Nissan Design, Emilie Grimm, Colour and Trim Designer, Hyundai Motor, Amko Leenarts, Design Director, Ford, Jesse Paegle, Automotive Steel Solution Director, ArcelorMittal along with CDN editor James McLachlan. 

“As we put more recycled and natural content into plastics, there is sometimes a degradation in durability performance, so how does that work with internal policies for parts specificaiton, and what is the customer willing to compromise on?” Mason said. ”I can tell you that comfort is not one of those things, from our research.”

The day had many networing break for our esteemed speakers to connect outside of the sessions.

The next couple of sessions focused on accessible and inclusive EVs and the importance of standardisation in achieving cost-efficiency, process effectiveness and quality control. Adam Donfrancesco, Engineering director, Callum, and James Horne, Head of Accessible Vehicles, Motability Operations joined Ultima Media’s Christopher Ludwig on stage to discuss the wheelchair-accessible vehicle they have been working on. They emphasises that a key focus for producing the eVita, their fully electric inclusive vehicle, is the battery. 

Separately, Markus Hein, Senior Site General Manager, Valeo, took the stage to discuss simplified production and development cycles across both Tier 1s and OEMs. Heine points to the importance of standardisation in achieving cost-efficiency, process effectiveness and quality control.

In the final two sessions we had Sven Wittke, Group Manager, Hyundai Motor and Joaquin Garcia, Head of Design, Italdesign to discuss about the collaboration among car designers, engineers and manufacturing specialists in realising designs from conception to production. The topic at hand was how to realise design ambitions; in other words, how design and engineering can work together to make a concept a living, breathing thing. 

Finally, Dr. Daniel Kirchert, Founder and CEO, NOYO AG, Gustavo Guerra,Vice President Strategic Product Planning, Volvo Group, along with CDN’s James McLachlan  took to the stage he discussion focussed on leadership, which felt quite a fitting way to wrap things up. 

We hope these moments captured the spirit of innovation, collaboration, and forward-thinking showcased at the event. From insightful keynote sessions to dynamic panel discussions, this gallery highlights the key moments and people driving the future of automotive production. Stay tuned for more updates and join us next year as we continue to push the boundaries of design and production in the automotive industry.