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Automotive Design & Production Announces Its 2007 Excellence in Automotive Design Award Recipients

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)
2007 Saturn Sky

PLYMOUTH, Mich., Dec. 5, 2006 -- The editors of Automotive Design & Production magazine selected the 2007 Saturn Sky (exterior) and 2007 GMC Yukon (interior) as the recipients of the magazine's 2007 Excellence in Automotive Design Awards. The winners were chosen from a field that includes new cars and light trucks available for retail delivery between January 1 and December 31, 2006.

"The ability to faithfully bring an idea to production is as important as the idea itself," says editor-in-chief Gary Vasilash, "which is why the Excellence in Automotive Design Awards also recognize the contributions of the supply community to creating breakthrough products." These awards are unique not only for recognizing both interior and exterior design excellence, but for acknowledging the contributions of key suppliers. The reason: the excellence of the end products is predicated, in large part, by the ability of suppliers to provide the vehicles with elements ranging from sheet metal to seats.

Vasilash, along with executive editor Chris Sawyer and senior editor Kevin Kelly, compiled a list of vehicles available for sale in calendar year 2006, and made their selection based on overall execution, harmony, quality, consumer value, and design breakthrough. The Saturn Sky was chosen for its combination of American brawn and European cool, while the GMC Yukon rose to the top of the list for its clean, simple shapes and luxurious interior ambience.

"This year's honorees displayed a penchant to push the envelope in terms of vehicle design, whether it was the quality of the cockpit of the GMC Yukon, which sets new benchmarks for light trucks; or the Saturn Sky and its innovative exterior design that was made possible only through going beyond the norm in terms of process technology," said Vasilash.

The editors honored the GMC Yukon based on the exceptional attention to detail in terms of materials and quality execution, as well as overall harmonization throughout the vehicle. "The ability of the design team to assure the high consistency of colors and textures across a number of different materials deserves major accolades," Vasilash said. "The visual clarity and simplicity of the cockpit projects a more upscale appeal than you'd expect to find in a full-size SUV."

In recognizing the 2007 Saturn Sky for its exterior design leadership, the editorial team focused on the taut, crisp lines and attention to detail. "There is not one piece of the exterior that doesn't contribute to the Sky's modern, yet sporting design theme, from the flowing headlamps to the double- hump fairings on the decklid. This truly is a breakthrough for GM and for Saturn," Vasilash said.

"GM's sweep of the awards was by no mean a foregone conclusion," said Vasilash. "Its dominance suggests an encouraging resurgence in American automotive design."

Published by Cincinnati, Ohio-based Gardner Publications, a premier North American publisher since 1928, Automotive Design & Production is an industrial-strength industry journal dedicated to reaching the most influential auto industry executives, designers, and engineers throughout the automotive supply chain.

Automotive Design & Production Excellence in Automotive Design Award recipients:

  Exterior award winners                       Interior award winners

  2007 Saturn Sky                              2007 GMC Yukon

  Suppliers                                    Suppliers

  Plastic Omnium                               Magna/Intier

  Amino North America                          Lear Corp.

  North American Lighting                      Delphi Corp.

                                               TRW Automotive