Bentley design chief Sielaff to leave; may join Geely, reports say

Bentley confirmed that its design chief, Stefan Sielaff, is leaving the Volkswagen Group ultraluxury brand.

Bentley did not comment on reports that Sielaff is joining Chinese automaker Geely, whose brands include Volvo, Polestar and Lotus. Sielaff will take over Peter Horbury’s role as head of Geely design, according to German press reports.

Sielaff “has left his position to pursue other career opportunities outside Bentley and the Volkswagen Group,” a Bentley spokeswoman told Automobilwoche, a sister publication of Automotive News.

Sielaff’s successor will be named this month, the spokeswoman added. Until then, Bentley’s chief development officer, Matthias Rabe, will temporarily head the design team.

Sielaff became Bentley’s design boss in 2015, moving from his job as head of VW Group’s Potsdam design center in Germany. He succeeded Luc Donckerwolke, who is now Hyundai Motor’s chief creative officer.

Sielaff, 59, has spent the majority of his career with the VW Group, joining the automaker in 1990 as an interior designer at Audi.

His departure also leaves a gap at VW Group. In addition to his job at Bentley, Sielaff was also in charge of the VW’s interior design strategies.

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