Mazda has just announced that the brand’s new European Design Director will be 49-year-old RCA graduate Jo Stenuit. He succeeds Kevin Rice who left Mazda to join Chery earlier this year.
It’s an internal move – Jo has been part of Mazda’s European design team for over 20 years and has held various positions at Mazda’s European design centre in Oberursel, Germany. Most recently he was Head of Interior Design and Brand Style, and was lead interior designer of two recent concept cars, the Kiyora (2008) and Hakaze (2007) as well as the previous generation Mazda3. He also spent two years in Mazda’s global headquarters in Hiroshima developing the interior design of the Mazda CX-7.
“Thanks to our award-winning ‘Kodo – Soul of Motion’ design philosophy, Mazda designers in Europe and elsewhere have been a key driver of the success of our products, creating beautiful cars that resonate with our customers,” said Jeff Guyton, President and CEO of Mazda Motor Europe. “We are delighted, with his depth of understanding of our brand, that Jo will be leading our design team in Europe. Together with his team, we know he will continue to ensure that our philosophy is being applied not only in our cars, but in everything we do.”
Jo will report to Mazda Global Design Chief Ikuo Maeda, as well as Hajime Seikaku, Vice President of Mazda’s European R&D.