Even to casual car enthusiasts, Chris Bangle needs no introduction. One of the most controversial designers of all time, the "Bangle Butt" redesign of the BMW 7 Series is still hotly debated even today. Introduced in 2002 during Bangle's tenure as chief designer at BMW, the E65 7 Series only began to develop Bangle's new design language for BMW, later dubbed "flame surfacing." Whether you love or hate his work - and there seems to be no middle ground - the man's influence is undeniable. Many manufacturers have since borrowed aspects of his designs for their own vehicles.
It's only fitting, then, that the 25th anniversary Eyes On Design car show should award Bangle its prestigious Lifetime Design Achievement Award. Held each summer at the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House just outside Detroit in Grosse Pointe Shores, Eyes On Design is a real insiders club, in that only those designers who have won the Lifetime Design Achievement Award are eligible to vote.
While we knew Bangle would be receiving this award from his peers since November 2011, the actual ceremony was held this past weekend at the Detroit Yacht Club. Retired Ford designer Jack Telnack, General Motors design chief Ed Welburn, and Ford director of exterior design Joel Piaskowski were among those who spoke. Bangle joins a pretty famous crew of past award winners, including Italian design legends Giorgetto Giugiaro and the recently deceased Sergio Pininfarina, William "Willy" G. Davidson of Harley-Davidson, and former Chrysler and GM "car guy in chief" Bob Lutz.
Scroll down to watch video footage of the awards ceremony and read the full press release.