GM loses high ranking designer image

Dave Lyon, one of General Motors’ highest-ranking designers, left the company just days before he was scheduled to lead the design department for GM’s European Opel/Vauxhall brands. His unexpected leave took everyone by surprise, with GM PR representatives declining to comment on the issue.

His latest achievement with GM was the design of the much appreciated interior of the 2013 Cadillac XTS luxury sedan. He was also responsible for Buick’s transition to a modern global design theme that would connect with GM’s European Opel brand. Other important tasks that Lyon performed were designing small crossovers for GMC and the interior of the Chevrolet Volt, the latter in collaboration with other GM designers.

Recently, Lyon helped integrate harmoniously new infotainment and connectivity technology such as Cadillac User Experience, Chevrolet MyLink and Buick/GMC IntelliLink into dashboards. On Wednesday, he was supposed to take over GM’s German design studio, as he got the job of vice president of design for GM Europe on June 18.

His reasons are yet unknown, but it’s clear that his departure is a blow to Opel/Vauxhall, which are undergoing management and labor problems amid the economic crisis in Europe.